Collins 30


A SUBLIME curling effort from Archie Collins handed Dorchester a 1-0 win over Redditch United at the Avenue Stadium in the Evo-Stik Southern Premier Division.

Running forward from 30 yards, Collins’ strike landed in the bottom corner having evaded Ethan Ross’ dive.

But Dorchester had to withstand late pressure from Redditch to earn a fourth consecutive home league win and clean sheet.

Boss Steve Thompson named three changes to the starting XI that began the 3-0 loss at King’s Lynn last Saturday with Ed Bastick, Antonio Diaz and Tom Blair missing out.

But in came new signing Cameron Ebbutt for his debut, while Collins recovered from illness and made his first start for the Magpies. Ross Carmichael was the other change to the Dorchester XI but there was no place in the matchday squad for Antonio Diaz or Jason Brookes.

Redditch, meanwhile, counted former Weymouth man Stuart Fleetwood in their starting XI, who moved from cash-strapped Merthyr earlier this season.

In a high-octane opening to the game, with both sides rapidly breaking forward, Dorchester created the first chance.

Centre-back Ross Carmichael was the spark, lofting a ball over the top for Sam Lanahan, who nipped behind the hesitant Redditch defence before poking a shot at advancing Reds’ keeper Ethan Ross, who saved with his face.

After resisting that Magpies attack, Redditch looked to exploit Dorchester on each wing, with the searing pace of wingers Adam Page and Tristain Dunkley complementing the energy of Edjidja Mbunga.

But a spell of two corners only brought a ballooned shot from Dunkley, before Page blasted wide of Chris Weale’s goal from 18 yards.

Fleetwood was also kept quiet by the efficiency of Callum Rose, who expertly dealt with the forward after intercepting a ball over the top.

Dorchester were guilty of wasting several corners as the deliveries of Ebbutt and Kyle Egan failed to trouble the Reds’ defence, but Lanahan controlled well on the turn before slipping as he shot, resulting in a weak effort at goal.

In an even first-half, the match was propelled into life through Collins’ blockbuster goal.

The Exeter City loanee collected the ball 30 yards out, shuffled forward and unleashed a curling shot that evaded the despairing dive of Ross, landing in the bottom corner of the net to reward the forward for an industrious display.

Neil Martin then curled a free-kick at Ross from the right, before Ebbutt shot tamely at the Reds’ stopper after good link-up play between Collins and Billy Lowes.

Collins then turned provider for Lanahan, who guided the ball to Lowes - the midfielder unlucky to see the ball bobble before shooting wide with his knee as Dorchester failed to capitalise on their good play after the goal.

Redditch nearly made them pay just after the resumption, Dunkley dummying for Fleetwood, whose powerful strike was superbly palmed onto the post by Weale.

Martin tried an ambitious volley that thundered wide soon after, before Mbunga sprinted upfield and dragged a shot wide with Weale flying to his right.

Redditch had started the second-half much the better side and Mbunga wasted another opportunity, this time after smart work from right-back Lewis Wright, by placing his shot wide when unmarked from 12 yards following Wright’s pull-back.

The Reds continued to press and Fleetwood saw a shot deflected out off Luke Winsper before Louis Ezewele volleyed into a crowd of bodies from the resultant corner.

Dunkley then headed wide from Sammons’ delivery from a corner as Redditch tried desperately to find an equaliser.

Ross was sent up for a late set-play but after Dorchester cleared the danger, Reds’ left-back Nathan Fox was able to steer the ball away from the open goal under pressure from sub Dom Panesar-Dower.

As Redditch threw men forward, Egan broke downfield again and his cross to the back post found Ebbutt, whose stabbed effort was smothered by Ross, but it mattered little as Dorchester held firm to record their fourth home league win in a row to move into 19th.

Magpies: Weale, Egan, Martin, Rose, Carmichael, Bowles, Winsper, Lowes, Collins (Panesar-Dower 88), Lanahan (Bastick 73), Ebbutt. Subs not used: Blair, Griggs, J Ross

Redditch: E Ross, Wright (Rosser 73), Fox, Ezewele, Stares, Jackman, Dunkley (Hussain 90+1), Sammons, Fleetwood, Mbunga (Belmonte 87), Page.

Referee: Craig Scriven (Wedmore)

Attendance: 443


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