Takeley cruise to top spot in the league
TAKELEY moved to the top of the Essex Senior League with an impressive 3-1 away victory over last year’s runners-up.
Although the final score was convincing, the outcome could have been different if Southend Manor had not wasted a series of good chances.
The Station Road outfit opened the scoring in the 12th minute when Graeme Turner capitalised on a hole in the hosts’ defence to blast his shot home.
It wasn’t long before Takeley were almost pegged back, however.
Keeper Ronnie Yates was thrust into action just two minutes later and he made a superb save from David Tubbs from six yards out.
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Another chance went begging for Southend Manor moments later when an unmarked Aaron Baldwin fired wide from inside the penalty box after Tubbs had squared the ball.
The hosts didn’t have it all their own way though. Turner went close to doubling Takeley’s advantage with a header from an Alex Martin corner before the latter was instrumental in the visitors’ second.
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He rifled in a shot from 20 yards before Greig Taylor made it 2-0 on 40 minutes.
Two minutes after the break youngster Scott Smith produced a great strike that was just about parried away by Jack Buckfield in the Southend Manor goal.
And on 54 minutes the game was all but over. Turner grabbed his second goal after smashing a 30-yard drive into the back of the net.
The match gradually petered towards its conclusion before Wilfred Msiska finally found a way past Yates to give the home side a well-deserved consolation.
There was still time for Southend Manor to give the visitors another scare when Ben Sartain was left with a glorious chance to reduce the arrears further, but he was unable to hit the target.
Takeley were due to be back in action last night (Wednesday) in the return leg against Bethnal Green in the League Cup. Steve Castle’s men held a slender 1-0 advantage from the away tie.
Next up the Station Road outfit are scheduled to play Stansted at home in the second round of the Gordon Brasted Memorial Trophy next Wednesday.