FOOTBALL - Earlswood beat rivals Hampton before holding Kenilworth to draw - The Solihull Observer

FOOTBALL - Earlswood beat rivals Hampton before holding Kenilworth to draw

EARLSWOOD Town beat Solihull rivals Hampton 2-1 before fighting back to claim an impressive point away at Kenilworth Sporting over the bank holiday weekend.

The Earls equalised late on at Sporting courtesy of Tom Reynolds’ superb volley after Joe Wright had opened the scoring at Gypsy Lane.

That came after a derby win at home to Hampton as Tom Kinsey and Mikey Bridges put the Earls in command before the visitors scored a late consolation at The Pavilions.

The results mean Earlswood sit eighth in the Midland Football League Division Two table having lost just one of their opening five matches.

And the Earls started second best against Kenilworth, conceding after just five minutes when a ball from out wide floated to the far post and found ex-Earls man Wright who headed home.

Sporting nearly doubled their lead from a free kick on the half hour mark as Jason Evans curled the ball just past the post.

The hosts came close again just before half-time as a low driven shot towards goal was cleared off the line by Reece Rawlings to keep the deficit to a single goal.

However, the Earls were much improved after the break as Kinsey proved a handful for the Kenilworth defence whilst new signing Nicholas Cox dictated play in the second half of his Earlswood return.

Chances began to fall the visitors way as Kinsey rattled the side netting from a tight angle having skipped past the Sporting backline.

And minutes later, Earlswood thought they had found their goal through Louis Bridges who headed the ball over the bar from a dangerous cross.

However, with only eight minutes left to play, Reynolds stepped up and rifled the ball, on the volley, into the back of the net to earn the Earls a well-deserved point on the road.

That came after the Earls recorded a second consecutive home win with a 2-1 victory against local rivals Hampton.

Tom Milllard created several problems for the Hampton backline with his dynamism and created several half chances from the right to no avail.

And just before the 20-minute mark, the hosts were rewarded for their efforts through Kinsey’s second successive goal as the striker headed the ball over the keeper having latched on to Reynolds’ deep free kick.

The Earls quickly doubled their lead after a mistake at the back from the Hampton goalkeeper allowed Bridges to dribble past him and tap the ball into an empty net for his third of the season.

Home goalkeeper Alastair Lewis made some top saves in the second period to keep the Earls lead in tact before Dan McGrath pulled back a consolation for the visitors in injury time.

Earlswood are next in action at home to Boldmere Sports and Social Falcons on Saturday, September 3 with kick-off at 3pm at The Pavilions.

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