12:14am Monday 18th February 2013
By Andrew Simpson
BRIAN Pritchard’s first feeling at hearing the final whistle on Saturday was that of relief.
Whitby Town’s wins sequence ended at the same time visitors Witton Albion, they hope, started one with a 3-1 success.
After five Premier Division matches without maximum points, a run that has seen his side relinquish a play-offs position in the table, the manager’s sensation should not be a surprise.
“There has been pressure on me, and that’s frightened me,” said Pritchard afterwards.
“I have had one or two moments when I’ve wondered when the next win will come.
“When that happens you question what you’ve been doing and whether you’ve been making mistakes. It worries you, stops you sleeping even.
“A couple of weeks ago we might have stopped after they scored, but I was happy with how we reacted.
“It feels like we’ve drawn a line and set off in a different direction.”
Witton controlled the first half, creating the best chances without scoring a goal.
Steve Foster did exactly that early in the second half, a lead Albion protected until four minutes from time when Whitby’s Craig Farrell prodded a loose ball in the net to level.
Faced with the prospect of losing further ground on the teams above them, Witton’s response was defiant.
Danny Andrews scored as the clock reached 90 minutes, substitute Shaun Tuck steering in a third goal in stoppage time to add gloss.
Pritchard said: “It’s a huge win because it restores further the players’ confidence.
“I challenged them to produce on the pitch what they’re capable of.
“They did that at the same time as battling hard when they needed to.
“We can’t play catch-up football every week, so it was nice to start as strongly as we did. I think it surprised them to be honest.”
To read a report of Saturday's game, click here: http://bit.ly/Z6dY1v
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