Racing Club Warwick 2-1 Hinckley AFC
Saturday’s match at Racing Club Warwick was the same old story for Hinckley AFC as they slipped to a 2-1 defeat at Townsend Meadow.
Despite creating enough chances to win the game, they couldn’t find the finishing touch, and they were made to pay by the home side, who scored a goal either side of half time to condemn Hinckley to defeat.
Hinckley pulled a goal back late on through JJ Melligan’s penalty, but they couldn’t find a leveller in stoppage time, and their misery was compounded when John Clapp was sent off after the final whistle.
Hinckley made numerous changes to their line up from the one that was beaten by Highgate United last week. Sam Arnold returned to the side in goal, Dominic Smith and John Clapp came back into the heart of the defence, and there were competitive debuts for Asa Wright and Marco Adaggio. Arguably the biggest change, though, was the return of captain Melligan from injury.
The opening exchanges were fairly quiet as both sides settled into the game. In Hinckley’s only chance of the opening quarter of an hour, Luke Richards was sent through on goal after two minutes by Bekir Halil, but lost his footing at the vital moment.
At the other end, Ryan Langmead found space on the edge of Hinckley’s box, but he saw Arnold turn his shot over the bar.
Nathan Walker then sliced a shot wide from the edge of the box, before The Racers took the lead on the half hour mark. Terence Morton’s cross from the left flank wasn’t dealt with by Clapp, and Langmead drilled the ball into the bottom corner out of Arnold’s reach.
Racers’ keeper Tom Reynolds was barely tested in the first half, but he was called into action just a minute after the interval. Richards’ snap shot from 20 yards was only parried, but Adaggio, following the ball in, was flagged offside.
Hinckley then made a double substitution on the hour mark, which seemed to spark them into life in search of an equaliser. Mark Bellingham, one of the substitutes, saw his shot cleared off the line, before minutes later Adaggio’s diving header was comfortably saved.
Midway through the second half, Arnold made a strong save from the hosts’ substitute Jamie Corrigan, before Adaggio headed wide from Tyrone Clarke-O’Connell’s cross.
Hinckley’s other two substitutes, James Bennett-Tindall and Justin Nisbett, nearly made an instant impact. The former’s left wing cross was met at the far post by the latter, whose shot from close range somehow didn’t cross the line, and Reynolds saved.
With ten minutes remaining, The Racers added a second. Langmead made the most of an error from Arnold, who spilled a high cross straight at the feet of the grateful striker.
Hinckley, though, found a lifeline three minutes from time, when Clapp was adjudged to have been fouled in the box. Melligan converted the spot kick, sending Reynolds the wrong way.
Given belief by the goal, Hinckley pressed for an equaliser, and in the third minute of four added on, Bellingham’s powerful shot was stopped by Reynolds’ superb reaction save.
Hinckley’s winless run now stands at seven, and their misery was heightened when Clapp was shown a second yellow card after the final whistle.
Racing Club Warwick: Tom Reynolds, Joe Woodward (Jamie Vadasz 77), James Hancocks, Adam Laignt, Mark Turton, Alex Jervis, Terence Morton, Harry Jervis (Jamie Corrigan 57), Ryan Langmead, Elliott Powell, Jake Brown. Subs not used: Rob Campbell, Rory Curtis.
Goals: Ryan Langmead (29, 80)
Hinckley: Sam Arnold, Bekir Halil, Isaac Cooper, Nathan Walker, Dominic Smith, John Clapp, JJ Melligan, Asa Wright (Justin Nisbett 57), Luke Richards (Mark Bellingham 57), Tyrone Clarke-O’Connell (James Bennett-Tindall 74), Marco Adaggio. Subs not used: Mitchell Tomlinson, Avun Jephcott.
Goal: JJ Melligan (87, pen)