Promotion challengers Ampthill Town make it 15 games unbeaten with victory at Long Crendon

By Eric Turner

By Zoe Ashton
Tuesday, 15th March 2022, 8:09 am
Updated Tuesday, 15th March 2022, 8:12 am

History repeated itself in the best possible way for Ampthill Town on Saturday when they extended their unbeaten run to 15 games with a 3-2 win at Long Crendon.

A month previously Lee Hawkes' side were two goals down at Raunds and recovered to win 3-2 and four weeks later in their next away match Town were trailing by two goals again only to grab a stoppage time winner with a similar 3-2 win..

It was a case of deja vu for Town but the side who were two goals adrift at the break at Crendon's Oxford City ground battled back to take a dramatic and vital three points..

Ampthill struggled at the start on Oxford's artificial pitch and fell behind to two goals in a five minute spell. But a gallant fightback with some superb finishing and heroic work in defence won the day at Crendon.

A swirling wind on a difficult surface made life hard for Ampthill and the visitors' had one or two escapes before Long Crendon took the lead.. In the 20th minute Jim Hawkes burst through the area and his shot found the foot of the post before it nestled in the back of the net off a defender. Soon after Christian Warwick was allowed to evade several tackles to fire home Crendon's second. before the half hour mark.

Lawrence Burton had an opening cleared in a rare first half raid but Town raised their game in the second half with substitute Cerminara heading wide proving a warning. Ampthill reduced the arrears when Mike Draycott headed home a Charlie Cullen free kick in the 65th minute and seven minutes later a jinking run by Burton set up Cerminara to fire home the equaliser.

Crendon threw everything forward late in the game and only wayward finishing and some astonishing keeping by Tomkins kept the hosts from scoring a winner. But with the seconds ticking away Ampthill countered and Cerminara raced away to set up the chance for Danny Butler to send the winner home in another tremendous recovery .

It completed the double over Long Crendon and was an eighth away win for Ampthill with some wonderful team spirit and resilience. Ampthill remain third in the Spartan South Midlands League Division One, one point behind Winslow United and nine behind leaders Stotfold, all having played 29 games.

Ampthill are home to Northampton Sileby Rangers on Saturday before a trip to Stotfold on Tuesday in the SML Trophy last eight.