Romulus 0 Stamford 1
THE Daniels returned to action after a seven week lay-off with a 1-0 victory on New Year’s Day
Stamford supporters had feared the worst when, after a seven week break due to snow and ice, a makeshift line-up was announced for the match at Romulus.
Daniels boss Simon Clark was already missing the suspended Dan Cotton and Lee Beeson when Tony Battersby was ruled out with flu. Matt Heron has decided to move on and, when Graham Drury called Dean West back to Corby (where he spent the whole game on the bench), Clark was left with a threadbare squad.
Neither side came close to creating a chance until midway through the first half when Andy Toyne created space to play in Nathan Adams. But he was muscled off the ball before getting a shot away. A minute later a Nick Jackson throw in was cleared only to Ben Sedgemore whose quick shot struck a defender.
Stamford were enjoying a strong spell and it was no surprise when they took the lead after 26 minutes. Miles Chamberlain was given too much space and headed home a high teasing corner from Toyne.
The game then reverted to a midfield battle with only a long range shot from Seth Burkett testing either keeper.
Stamford should have doubled their lead soon after the restart when Paul Malone headed a Toyne free kick across goal.
An unmarked Ryan Oliver pushed his shot wide of the far post and the recently signed striker was unlucky minutes later when his shot was well held by Romulus keeper Lewis Exall.
Romulus had to push forward to get anything from the game and but with Simon Ashton in a five man defence, the Daniels held firm.
Malone headed onto the post as Stamford pressed to seal the win, while at the other end Malone did enough to force Marcus Brown to hurry his shot wide.
Daniels keeper Chris Wright had been a spectator for for much of the game but on 75 minutes had to stretch to tip over an over-hit cross from right back Robert Evans which would have crept in under the cross bar.
Three minutes later he pulled off an even better save, blocking a point blank header from Richard Robinson.
In a tight game, Stamford had defended well, created the better chances and deserved the three points.
Stamford: Chris Wright, Ben Sedgemore, Nick Jackson, Seth Burkett, Miles Chamberlain, Paul Malone, Simon Ashton, Adam Millson, Ryan Oliver, Nathan Adams (Jake Walton 79), Andy Toyne. Subs not used: Simon Clark, Richard Stainsby.
Man of the match: Andy Toyne.