Craig Veal and Dan Sullivan both scored twice to help the Peacocks to a 5-2 Evo-Stik League victory over Larkhall Athletic at the Viridor Stadium yesterday afternoon (24th March).
An entertaining game played in a good spirit saw Town record a terrific 25th successive league outing without defeat but the final scoreline does not tell the full story of the afternoon with the visitors looking the more threatening side for the first hour. Town made an ideal start with a goal after two minutes, Veal speeding down the right to pick out Sullivan in the middle who tucked home into the corner. Several half chances came and went before the Larks drew level seven minutes before the interval, John Elliott surging through an absent Town defence to lash home past Lloyd Irish. Greg Peel missed two good chances for the visitors when play resumed before Sullivan turned the game round on 63 minutes, turning just outside the box to rifle a superb strike into the top corner of Shaun Semmens’ net. Les Afful then missed a sitter when shooting straight at Semmens from close range but made amends soon after on 74 minutes when he wriggled across the area and steered home into the far corner. Larkhall reduced the arrears after 78 minutes when Mike Baker bulleted a header past Irish from Mason Winter’s free kick but Town hit back a minute later when Veal controlled and converted a cross from Sullivan to restore the two goal margin. Veal’s pace carried him past a defender and Semmens to slot home number five two minutes from time and there was still time for Alex Lambert to hit the post at the other end before the game concluded. With results elsewhere, the Peacocks’ win extends their lead at the top of the table to 13 points, meaning they now only need another eight points from their remaining nine fixtures to guarantee promotion.
Reaction | Manager Leigh Robinson commented: “It was a really open and entertaining game which we didn’t expect but fair play to Larkhall for coming to attack and making it a good spectacle. We were a bit under par in the first half but changed gear in the second half and scored some nice goals. I thought offensively Matt, Dan and Vealy were fantastic today and a goal from Les always goes down really well on the terraces. A good day’s work with our lead at the top growing by two points and hopefully we can capitalise on that further this week.”
Skipper and Peacocks Man of the Match Matt Wright said: “A great 5-2 win in a game where we started well, if anything too well, going 1-0 up inside a couple of minutes. We were guilty of becoming a bit complacent and gave them a route back into the game. Credit to all the boys though, we kept digging away and got our rewards in the second half with four more goals. Sully and Vealey fully deserved their goals and what goals they were! The scoreline may have flattered us a little bit but the three points were made that much sweeter when finding out the results elsewhere. Fans as always, were fantastic. The game extended our unbeaten run to 25 games. That’s some effort from everyone involved. We’re taking one game at a time with a tough Tuesday night game against Wimborne who are flying at the moment. Hopefully see you all there. Up the Peacocks!!!”