For the second time this season, Royal Wootton Bassett Town were on the receiving end of 6-0 thrashing by Bracknell Town.
Royal Wootton Bassett Town's brittle mentality reared its ugly head as they were on the receiving end of a 6-0 pounding from title challengers Bracknell Town.
A week after giving table toppers Thame United a real fright with a battling performance in what proved to be the narrowest of defeats, Rich Hunter's side put in a woeful display, lacking effort, desire and any semblance of pride.
While Bracknell demonstrated their quality, their pitiful opponents made it all too easy for them, raising the white flag as soon as they fell two goals behind in the game's opening quarter of an hour. Thereafter, Bassett proceeded to go through the motions, and it was always then going to be a question of how many the free-scoring Robins were going to plunder.
It took just one long ball out from the back to beat the Bassett defence for Bracknell's fourth minute opener, Adam Cornell racing onto 'keeper Chris Grace's clearance before planting a fierce twenty yard drive over the head of the onrushing Curtis Meare.
Ten minutes later, the visitors' failure to put pressure on the ball allowed Dave Hancock to grab Bracknell's second. A swift move saw play worked out to the dangerous Seb Bowerman on the left. He then powered past right back Steve Pleass and played a weighted pass to the far post, which a sliding, unmarked Hancock steered home.
There proved to be no respite as Bracknell continued to apply the pressure, though it would take them until the stroke of half time to further extend their lead.
It certainly helped that Bassett lacked any nous. Rather than seeking to stretch the home defence by bringing wide men Dan Bailey and Dale Richards into play or finding the feet of forwards Steve Robertson and Sam Packer, aimless long passes were played straight down the middle of the field, which were meat and drink for experienced centre half pairing Carl Davies and Diak John. Possessions was therefore quickly turned over, allowing Bracknell to give Bassett the run around.
Nine minutes before the break, TJ Bohane curled wide from a Cornell pass, while shortly after Meare had to parry Kensley Maloney's scrambled shot from a tight angle.
Then, with a minute to go before the break, another failure to close Bracknell's midfield down allowed Cornell to slip Bowerman through in the left corner. The winger surged to the byline, where he cut the ball back into the six-yard box, and Cornell was on hand to provide the finishing touch for his second.
Despite having the game wrapped up, Bracknell did not take their foot off the gas after the restart.
Ten minutes into the second period, an incisive counter attack after Bassett wasted a free kick deep in the hosts' territory culminated in Cornell feeding a delicate through pass to Bohane, who calmly picked out the bottom corner.
On the hour, centre midfielder Jamie McClurg danced around three rather meek challenges before coolly slotting past Meare.
With half an hour to play and the score standing at 5-0, it was damage limitation time for Bassett. Still though, they failed to shut down Bracknell's attacking juggernaut.
Bowerman came close when his powerful strike took a slight deflection and narrowly flew over, and Bohane should have done better from six yards out when a poor touch denied him the opportunity of poking home from George Short's cross. Cornell then was inches away from claiming a hat trick when his toe poke from substitute Carl Withers' square pass struck the outside of the post.
A sixth did eventually arrive. And it did so in style. After chesting down Johnny Gray's diagonal pass, Cornell flicked a back heel into the path of Bowerman, who grabbed the goal that his outstanding performance deserved.
Credit: Stuart Smedley
Last modified on Saturday 18th March 2017 at 19:47