Deadly Dan nets double as Magpies defeat Oxhey

PUBLISHED: 11:02 27 March 2008 | UPDATED: 13:05 06 May 2010

The Recreation Ground was waterlogged on Saturday

The Recreation Ground was waterlogged on Saturday

Molten Spartan South Midlands Premier Division Oxhey Jets 1 Colney Heath 2 TWO goals from Dan Cornock boosted Colney Heath s survival bid in the Molten Spartan South Midlands Premier Division at Oxhey Jets.

Molten Spartan South Midlands Premier Division

Oxhey Jets 1 Colney Heath 2

TWO goals from Dan Cornock boosted Colney Heath's survival bid in the Molten Spartan South Midlands Premier Division at Oxhey Jets.

The Magpies were struggling to field a side for the match, played on Wednesday, March 19, and manager Craig Johnstone was thrilled with his players after the club had to stretch resources to the limit. He said: "From my point of view it is the biggest result of my career. At 5.45pm I didn't have a team which was extremely worrying. It was a massive six pointer and we needed to get a result. On the Tuesday the reserves had a game and the youth team were playing on Wednesday as well so a number of players were tied up."

Midfielder Gary Simmons featured for the reserves for 90 minutes on Tuesday and then had to be called in to play 90 minutes for the first team a day later. Young striker John Rathbone was also in the squad as youth team boss Steve Chittenden gave him the green light to feature.

Dean Shuttleworth returned after injury to play at right back with Mark Lawford back from injury at left back. Lee Gorrell and Anthony Muthusamy continued in defence with Neil Jordan, Simmons, Lee Rickard and Dean Parratt in midfield. Ashley Aimakhu partnered Cornock in attack and Rathbone made the bench alongside Mark Blackburne and James Lawrence.

Oxhey took the lead when Wayne Gladdy scored after a mistake in the Colney Heath defence early on. The Magpies regrouped and responded well, driven forward by the excellent Rickard who hit the side netting after a good through pass from Parratt.

The equaliser arrived when Rickard fed Parratt who crossed a great ball for Cornock to apply the finish and crown a spectacular move from eight yards.

Muthusamy and Gorrell made a vital interception to deny Oxhey a second and, after a pep talk from the manager at the break, powerful striker Aimakhu made his presence count following the restart. Cornock was again in the right place to capitalise with a thumping strike following a good move. Johnstone said: "Dean Shuttleworth played the ball forward and Ashley broke away from the defender. He squared the ball for Dan Cornock who rammed it into the top corner with an emphatic finish."

Rathbone came on to play a key role with his work rate and energy up front as the Magpies refused to allow Oxhey back into the contest. Cornock, instead, went close to a memorable hat trick after Rathbone delivered a good through pass. The final score was 2-1 and Johnstone said: "It was a major win for the club and it was a massive relief for myself after I was struggling to get a team out at 5.45pm. On the bench I had Mark Blackburne who was back after eight-to-10 weeks out injured and James Lawrence who had played 90 minutes for the reserves. Gary Simmons had one of his best games for a long time and he played through the two 90 minutes."

Striker Dan Cornock caught the eye with a brace after coming up from the reserves and manager Johnstone said: "I asked Dan to prove to me he is good enough for first team football and he responded with two cracking goals. He could have got a hat trick. He did ever so well."

The home fixture with Beaconsfield SYCOB on Saturday was postponed due to the bad weather. The Magpies went away to top five outfit Brimsdown Rovers on Wednesday and face another tough test on Saturday when they go away to Hanwell Town.

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