Yeltz 1 Rugby 0

17 April 2004

The mighty Yeltz made sure of an all-important top seven finish with a hard-fought victory over Rugby. A first half penalty from Asa Charlton made all the difference, and with Sutton losing we're now guaranteed to finish in the "promotion" positions.

Just as importantly, we can now party at Taunton next week without worrying about the result. I'm not sure if there are any plans as yet for the traditional last away game of the season fancy dress, but what ever happens I'm sure there'll be a big turnout - see you all there.

There's a new vote on the site - an unofficial player of the season - if you're interested! (it's working now - apologies for the poor performance by the hosting company again)

In Fantasy Island, it looks like Kev Crook has amazingly won again being 18 points clear with only two games left. Still no idea how he does it :-)

Match Report from DJ

Halesowen Town: Sheils; Grocutt, Haywood, Charlton, Jones, Skidmore, Steane (Colwell 88), Forsdick, Haarhoff (Carter 85), Baker, Foy (Strachan 65). Unused Subs: Gallieri, Hollis

Rugby United: Pearcey; Moran (Charley 90), Williams, Hart, Commander, Rutherford, Squire, Dutton, Beard, Marsden, Hegarty (Pearson 76). Unused Subs: Redgate, Herbert, Thomas

Referee: W. Ramsay (Coventry) Attendance: 456 Booked: Dutton (41), Charlton (80) Sponsors' Man of the Match: Dave Haywood

Halesowen clinched a top-seven promotion spot with Asa Charlton's first-half penalty separating the two sides.

Although looking lightweight up front Halesowen started brightly and Dave Haywood almost beat Rugby goalkeeper Jason Pearcey to the ball in the 7th minute. Two minutes later Stuart Skidmore controlled the ball and fired over the bar from the edge of the area and Pearcey raced off his line in the 22nd minute to claim the ball when David Foy burst forward from midfield.

Rugby appeared content to try to claim a point to help guarantee their own promotion cause but as they settled home goalkeeper Mark Sheils grabbed a 29th minute cross from Justin Marsden and Robbie Beard hit over the bar with a 30th minute free-kick. Simon Forsdick's pass to Charlton fell short and let in Marsden in the 31st minute but he flashed the ball wide after running through from midfield.

CHARLTON slammed home the winning goal for the Yeltz in the 37th minute from the penalty spot after Jimmy Haarhoff was brought down despite the protestations of Michael Hegarty and Craig Dutton.

Rugby poured forward in the second half and Andy Commander nodded a Hegarty free-kick wide of goal in the 55th minute. Sheils then tipped away a fine 25-yard effort from Gary Moran before saving a 25-yard free-kick from Jamie Williams.

Ben Steane missed a good opportunity to increase Halesowen's lead in the 65th minute when he hit Forsdick's cross wide from 10 yards. Sheils collected a 20-yard free-kick from Beard at the second attempt in the 66th minute but Rugby wasted a number of free-kicks conceded by Halesowen on the edge of their own area. Charlton then cleared off his own line after Sheils fumbled a 70th minute corner but Sheils recovered to block a 71st minute Beard shot with Halesowen pegged back.

Skidmore almost weaved his way through the Rugby defence on 73 minutes and two minutes later Pearcey saved with his legs from Haarhoff who was put through by substitute Craig Strachan. In injury time substitute Alfie Carter hit the side netting from fellow substitute Richard Colwell's through ball.