HELLENIC LEAGUE: Three unbeaten for in-form Reds

This Is Wiltshire: Dan Bailey scored for Fairford Dan Bailey scored for Fairford

FAIRFORD made it three games unbeaten courtesy of a 3-2 victory at Letcombe in Hellenic League Division One West.

Manager Paul Braithwaite had a threadbare squad at his disposal but included new loan signing Nathan Hawkins in the squad following his switch from Cirencester.

Despite being nowhere near full strength in wet conditions, Fairford had too much for their hosts, who made the scoreline much more flattering with a couple of late goals.

The Reds held a 1-0 lead at half-time thanks to Matt Boucher, who scored his second goal in as many games. Following a throw-in, Steve Hall fed the midfielder and he took a touch before rifling his shot superbly into the top corner from range.

The advantage was extended midway through the second period when Callum Parsons’ teasing delivery was nodded home by Dan Bailey as he reached the ball just before the goalkeeper.

Substitute John Watson made an swift impact with one of this early touches when he dinked over the stopper to put the visitors 3-0 ahead.

Lyle Gifford and Andrew Goodchild scored for Letcombe in the final quarter of an hour, but given that the second of these efforts was in the closing moments, Fairford were able to hold on.

Boss Braithwaite felt the winning margin could have been bigger but was unconcerned given that his team ended up with three points.

He said: “We were 1-0 up at half-time and built up a 3-0 lead quite quickly in the second half and settled quite nicely after that and could probably have taken one or two chances.

“We were missing about seven players and where we changed the formation, it didn’t allow for us to know what we were doing.

“We gave a sloppy goal away with the last kick of the game but it was a case of job done really.

“It was a horrible day, very wet, but we got the result that we needed.”

Fairford are now sixth in the standings on 30 points, some 14 points behind league leaders Tytherington, who have played two games more.

Shortwood reserves, Clanfield, Lydney and Purton are also at the sharp end attempting to close the gap on the table-toppers.

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