Poppies seal victory over Hitchin

Thomas Baillie
Thomas Baillie

Kettering Town put their official relegation on hold as they claimed an Evo-Stik Southern League Premier Division double with a fine 3-1 win over Hitchin Town at Steel Park.

Poppies boss Thomas Baillie included a new name in his starting line-up with Nathan Ndzomo starting at right-back while Henry Eze started in an attacking role with Chris Logan partnering Dan Crowie in defence.

Eze had the first chance of the game when he shot wide but he did find the target in spectacular style on 25 minutes when he converted a fantastic overhead-kick to put the Poppies in front.

Hitchin went close when Nathan Fox got a crucial deflection on Callum Donnelly’s shot and the same player blasted over before half-time as the visitors pushed for an equaliser.

Kettering started the second half slowly and Michael Quirke saved from Ellis Remy before Lewis Toomey poked an effort wide.

And Hitchin did draw level just before the hour mark when Donnelly’s cross was turned in by Remy.

But Kettering responded well to that setback and they were back in front on 66 minutes when good work from substitute Aidan Bradshaw ended with Nathan Hicks rifling a shot in from the edge of the area.

And the Poppies made the game safe with four minutes from the end when Solomon Akinshade latched onto a through-ball and lofted it over visiting goalkeeper Martin Bennett.

Poppies line-up: Quirke, Ndzomo, Eze, Crowie, Fox, Hamilton, Logan, Hicks, Ford, Njie, Muzvimbiri. Subs: Akinshade, Lavin, Bradshaw, Glen.

Attendance: 220.