FOOTBALL: Lethal Luke’s lovely strike leaves Shakespeare lost for words

George Swift runs at the Shakespeare defence during Sunday's clash at The Wong

George Swift runs at the Shakespeare defence during Sunday's clash at The Wong

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Horncastle Town Development XI 1-1 Shakespeare Athletic

A superb strike from Luke Blondel helped Town’s Development squad grab a deserved point against Lincoln and District League Division Five rivals Shakespeare Athletic at The Wong on Sunday.

Town, again ravaged by injury, produced a much improved performance against decent opponents and the draw maintains their challenge for a top four finish.

Town opened in lively style and had most of the early possession. They created a couple of chances but could not find the back of the net.

When Shakespeare’s forwards threatened, they were kept quiet by good defensive performances from Joe Wilkinson and Callum Hotchin.

Town continued to press and took the lead. A fine ball to Henry Lyddiat from Callum Low resulted in a foul by the defender and Blondel stepped up to curl the free kick around the wall and into the net.

With ‘keeper Liam Smith in confident form, Town defended that lead until half time and must have felt confident of all three points.

However, the second half belonged mainly to Shakespeare. They had most of the possession and Town had to produce some impressive defending.

At the same time, Town managed to create a couple of decent chances. Blondel latched on to a great ball from George Swift to get in behind the defence, but he slid a shot agonisingly wide of the post with only the ‘keeper to beat.

Eventually, Shakespeare’s midfield dominance paid off with a fine strike and goal with 20 minutes to go.

Both teams pressed in the final quarter in search of the winner but an excellent match ended all square.

Town boss Mark Simmons was much happier with his side’s displays and said: “You look for a reaction in football and we got that.

“It was a much improved performance from last week, well done to the lads.”

Town: Smith, Hotchin, Wilkinson, Garnett, Wright, D. Maplethorpe, Low, And Bullivant, Lydiatt, Swift, Blondel, Sewell, Subs: Fidling, Ash Bullivant.