Royal Wootton Bassett Town fell to a derby defeat as two goals from the prolific TJ Bohane helped Highworth Town to a 2-0 victory in their first visit to the New Gerard Buxton Sports Ground.
Royal Wootton Bassett Town failed to build on Saturday's impressive away victory against Ascot United, falling to a 2-0 defeat against local rivals Highworth Town in a derby encounter that offered few thrills.
A bumper crowd of over 200 were provided little real entertainment as Bassett in particular were muted. In the end a pair of well taken goals, one in either half, from TJ Bohane provided the visiting Worthians with an all too comfortable triumph that preserved their 100% league record so far this season.
Although without leading marksman Steve Robertson, there were no great shifts in the line-up from that which performed so brilliantly on the road on Saturday. However, there was a marked output in terms of performance.
Robertson's absence led to manager Paul Braithwaite starting the game with Nathan Gambling on his own up front as he packed the midfield to match Highworth man-for-man.
While Gambling did well holding the ball up, his lack of strike partner too often led to him being in a situation where he had to wait endlessly for a teammate to pass too. And frequently his sole option for a pass was to play back into midfield rather than into space behind the visitors' defence, who were rarely tested.
The one moment that Bassett had any tangible success offensively in the opening period came on 25 minutes when Sam Packer received a reverse pass from Gambling and surged beyond Sam Wadieh before cutting back for the unmarked lone striker on the edge of the area. Gambling, however, snatched at his shot, firing to the right of the goal.
A minute later the hosts were behind, Bohane demonstrating his deadly eye for goal. Aaron Maximen danced past challenges from Packer and Steve Yeardley in the midfielder before slipping a ball into the left channel. Bohane, timing his run across the forward line perfectly, beat the offside trap and raced onto the loose ball before lofting a delicate chip over the onrushing Luke Kuczynski.
Prior to that goal the best Highworth could conjure was a glancing Callum Parsons header, which sailed narrowly wide of the left post.
But after taking the lead they began to impose their authority. Brad Clark did well to control Toby Clark's angled free kick, before swivelling and sending a dipping strike inches the wrong side of the right post from 25 yards. Richie Saunders then dragged a 20 yard drive across goal after being brought into play by Bohane's hold up play.
The Worthians continued to apply pressure after the restart, and Bassett suffered a lucky escape on 52 minutes when Bohane, unmarked and six yards from goal, could only head Brad Clark's right wing cross off target.
Five minutes later he had his second though. It came from Bassett losing possession from their own throw, and the ball was eventually worked to Bohane on the right edge of the area, where he rolled George Drewitt and arrowed a low strike with his favoured left foot beyond Kuczynski at the near post.
Falling two behind heralded a shift in strategy for Bassett, with central midfielder Richie Carter being sacrificed for young forward Kalum Youngsam.
While the next action in front of goal came with Kuczynski acrobatically tipping over a Parsons header, that substitute did eventually help spark some life into the home team's attacking efforts.
Dan Bailey's pot shot from the left touchline had Kurtis Sharkey scrambling, the 'keeper just being able to punch over as the shot threatened to creep into the top corner.
A well worked move then saw Harvey Scholes deliver a dangerous low cross from the right into the Highworth six yard box. Dale Richards looked set to steer in at the far post, but was denied thanks to Lee Bowen's last ditch sliding tackle.
That proved to be the best Bassett could muster. Indeed, they were somewhat fortunate to finish the game two goals behind their visitors as Nathan Blackford rattled the post from a tight angle and Toby Clark failed to find the target with another free header.
Man of the Match: Kalum Youngsam â€“ showed a willingness to run at and take on defenders in the half hour he was given; it was his introduction that helped spark at least some life into a subdued side.
Credit: Stuart Smedley
Last modified on Monday 31st August 2015 at 20:56