RUGBY TOWN: A win at last!
Valley beat Tividale 1-0 in Birmingham Senior Cup
Birmingham Senior Cup – First Round
Rugby Town 1
Town were finally back to winning ways on Tuesday evening at Butlin Road, when a single goal victory over Midland Football League opponents saw them book a place in the next stage of the local FA knockout competition.
Leigh Phillips’ strike on ten minutes was enough to see off Tividale and end Valley’s ten match run without a win in the process.
It was a much changed Rugby line-up, with just four players remaining from the weekend’s starting line-up as Town boss Gary Moran took the opportunity to check out a number of his fringe players.
The home side had already gone close on a number of occasions ahead of Phillips’ early goal, with Tividale keeper Luke Kiskinans touching over Lewis Rankin’s well-struck effort from Aiden Print’s cross and new signing Chris Sterling also putting one into the side netting after strike partner Jordan Wilson had played him in through the middle.
The deadlock was broken though when Wilson’s pull-back fell nicely for Phillips to slot home from just inside the box and give Town reward for their bright start.
The visitors rallied well though, and stand-in keeper Ben Heath did well to deny Dan Smith, when the striker was through on goal.
Wilson lifted another one over for Rugby and then the same player saw his shot saved by Kiskinans, but the final chance of the half fell to the away side, with Liam Smith heading against the frame after a scramble from a corner.
It was a generally uneventful second half, as Rugby’s performance petered off somewhat and the visitors also struggled to create anything of significance in the final third of the pitch.
The pick of the chances fell to Valley though, with substitute Adrian Boitos curling one just wide and Rankin striking the base of Kiskinans’ post with a free-kick from distance.
Boitos had a further shot deflected up for a corner, whilst with Tividale’s only real sighter of the period, Joe Bates’ sent a free-kick high over the stand behind the goal.
Rugby line-up: Heath, Print, Stringfellow, Delfouneso, Rowley, Punter, Phillips (Holloway), Halsall (Boitos), Wilson (Mbunga), Sterling, Rankin.
Subs not used: Hadland, Connor
Goal: Phillips 10
Tividale line-up: Kiskinans, Wedderburn, Bustin, Gardner, Hunt, Stevens, McPike, L.Smith, D.Smith, Bates, Porter.
Subs: Grainger, Hurdman, Preston
Rugby Star Man: Leigh Phillips