S Robertson (3)
Rylands Way, 23rd April 2013
It may have taken 76 minutes for Wootton Bassett Town to break the deadlock in their final fixture at Rylands Way, but once they did they ensured a perfect ending to life at where they have called home for over three quarters of a century.
For when Steve Robertson steered Mark Barnes' elegant cross into the back of the net, it triggered a superb finish. Robertson, who came on as a substitute, bagged two more to complete an outstanding hat-trick, while the defence held out for a clean sheet, ensuring an emphatic 3-0 victory against local rivals Malmesbury Victoria.
That it capped a season in which Bassett finished in second in Hellenic League Divison One West, thus securing promotion back to the Premier Division, made certain of a perfect night.
There could have been no better way to say goodbye.
In recent weeks Malmesbury had found their feet. And, despite their lowly league position, were able to keep Bassett in check during the game's early stages.
But when Robertson scored, something triggered inside Bassett. Soaking up the extra energy typically supplied when the floodlights are beaming, the hosts took control.
With five minutes remaining, Bassett's scorer tucked away an effort from the edge of the box. A minute later he raced onto a ball over the top before finishing coolly. Game over.
The stage was set for Bassett to leave Rylands Way in style. And they did. The ground has seen a huge amount over the years – both bad and good.
Its final swansong, fittingly, was nothing short of brilliant.
Last modified on Monday 22nd June 2015 at 23:38
S Robertson (3)