Relegation drop-zone looms large for Town

THE RELEGATION drop-zone is looming large for Hucknall Town after they were brushed aside by High fliers North Ferriby United in the Premier Division of the Evo-Stik League last Saturday (March 5).

A 3-0 defeat, secured by two goals in the last six minutes, left The Yellows fifth from bottom in a division that will see four teams demoted at the end of the season.

Just one point is keeping Tommy Brookbanks’ side clear of the relegation-elect.

Town need look no further than their form since the turn of the year to find the reason they have been sucked into trouble.

For they have failed to win a single league match in 2011.

Their position looks even more bleak when studying the table closer. For the two sides immediately below them, Mickleover Sports and Frickley Athletic, have games in hand.

Against Ferriby, who are hanging on to the coat-tails of league leaders FC Halifax Town in second place, Town started brightly.

David Graham and Tris Whitman both forced smart saves from home ‘keeper Steve Wilson.

Slowly though, Ferriby began to take control and Town ‘keeper Ross Whalin, who recovered from a car crash four days earlier to take his place between the posts, denied Kevin Larvin.

In the 27th minute, Ferriby took the lead. Wayne Brooksby carried the ball 50 yards before setting up Chris White to slot past Whalin.

The second half saw Whalin deny Russell Fry, before Martin Ball headed off the line for Town. At the other end, Graham saw a good effort from 20 yards go just inches wide.

Ferriby made the points safe on 84 when Steve Burton curled a free-kick into the net.

Alex Davidson rubbed salt in the wound with a third goal on 87, lashing home a lay-off from Brooksby.

Town are next in action when they travel to Bradford Park Avenue on Monday night (March 7, kick-off 7.45 pm) for the rearranged quarter-final clash in the Evo-Stik League Cup. The tie was postponed on Saturday February 26 because of a water-logged pitch at the Horsfall Stadium.

A hectic five days for Town is completed on Wednesday (March 9) when they welcome Buxton to Watnall Road for an Evo-Stik Premier Division clash (7.45 pm kick-off). The original fixture in January was abandoned after 63 minutes when the Watnall Road floodlights failed. Town were losing 1-0 at the time.

TOWN LINE-UP (versus North Ferriby): 1Whalin/ 2Smith, 3Jepson, 4Brindley, 5Pheasant, 6Ball, 7Burge, 8Chambers, 9Graham, 10Whitman, 11Griffith Junior. SUBS: 12Gent, 14Gill, 15Francis, 16Holmes, 17Lloyd.

CROWD: 223.