A dashing strike in the 16th minute strike from James Mortimer-Jones spoiled a faultless performance from Wootton Bassett Town as Carterton ran out 1-0 victors in their rearranged fixture. The loss means only a victory against title favourites Highworth would give Bassett a slight hope of survival.
Bassett were the better team in the first half as the defence did an excellent early job of protecting Rob Hopkins in goal and the attack created many chances.
In the 6th minute Dave Tyler did brilliantly to win possession of the ball at midfield and sprinted down the left before firing at goal but Nick Heritage kept the ball out with a good save.
Ash Bradshaw should have done better with a free kick a yard outside the box but the ball sailed straight down the middle and over.
With Carterton's first chance, they made it 1-0. Good work down the left enabled the ball to be cut back to Mortimer-Jones and the midfielder thundered in a tremendous volley which Rob Hopkins could only get a hand to.
Three minutes later Bassett were nearly back on level terms. Bradshaw whipped in a corner from the right that Heritage flapped and missed. After a short scrap for the ball, it ended up at Rich Willis' feet but his shot from six yards was cleared off the line.
Hopkins then kept out an Adi Holder shot after good work between Holder and Mark Threlfall.
Another Bradshaw set piece should have been converted in the 27th minute but Rich Gee could only head wide of an open goal before shots from Ben Border and Andy Henry failed to trouble the scoresheet just before the half.
The second half failed to produce as much action in front of goal as Bassett began to tire.
Midway through the second period referee Barry booked Holder for dissent and then a dangerous foul on Dave Tyler brought Henry a caution.
A shot on the turn from Jones went just wide after a low cross before Andy Hallett was booked for tripping.
Hopkins kept Threlfall at bay as he parried the strikers shot wide as Bassett continued to wilt due to the tiredness.
Border tried and failed from a free kick just outside the area before Mark Odom looked to lob Hopkins from thirty plus yards out found the roof of the net rather than the back of it.
With three men up front for the final ten minutes Bassett looked to find the back of the net and deep into injury time Steve Bunting unleashed a long range volley after Rob Day nodded the ball down to him but the ball sailed wide and Carterton were able to hang onto a hard fought three points, which weren't necessarily deserved.
Scoop's Man of the Match: Ash Bradshaw – a thorn in the side of the less than sturdy Carterton defence, his set pieces caused confusion and were unlucky not to be converted. Lacked a bit coming back but always at his best getting into the final third.
Scoop Rating: 8/10 – A brilliant performance against a top ten side and were unlucky to lose the match. As the case has been this season, a lack of firepower in front of goal was the reason Bassett failed to find the net.
Credit: Stuart Smedley
Last modified on Wednesday 16th September 2020 at 14:21