Hendrie’s brace seals Steelmen’s success

Corby Town joint-manager Andrew Wilson
Corby Town joint-manager Andrew Wilson

Stuart Hendrie’s superb second-half brace sent Corby Town back to winning ways at Steel Park as they came from behind to beat Weymouth 3-1.

After a slow start in which saw joint-manager Tommy Wright head into his own net to give the Terras the lead, the Steelmen were sparked into life by Nathan Rooney’s excellent equaliser five minutes before half-time.

And Corby were worthy winners after that with Hendrie taking centre-stage as the hosts recorded a fifth successive Calor League Premier Division on home soil in what was, remarkably, their first league match at Steel Park in nearly two months.

The Steelmen named newest signing Aman Verma, who has joined on loan from Stockport County until January, on the bench while Sam Ives was handed a start with Lee Hendrie absent as he plays alongside other ex-professionals in the Shining Legends five-a-side football tour in China.

It was Weymouth who started the brighter with Corby looking a bit flat early on and that would be the theme for the remainder of the half.

The Steelmen did have the first sight of goal when Tom Berwick wriggled free and shot just over the bar but it was the Terras who made the broke the deadlock just before the quarter-hour.

Corby goalkeeper Paul Walker did well to turn Stewart Yetton’s shot round the post after a neat move involving Matt Groves and Ben Joyce.

But, from the resulting corner, Steelmen joint-manager Tommy Wright headed into his own net under pressure from Michael Walker.

And things got worse for Corby, and a number of their followers, when skipper Paul Malone was forced off with an ankle injury after landing awkwardly in the box.

It was a disappointing end to a week that had seen Malone featured heavily on Twitter after bookmakers William Hill paid for a special headband to protect a cut he suffered last weekend. The offer of odds of 10/1 for him to score with his head disappeared with his withdrawal.

Gareth Jelleyman replaced him with Chris Carruthers moving into the centre of defence but Corby continued to struggle to get a grip on the game.

That was until the 40th minute when, out of pretty much nothing, they found an equaliser.

Wright teed up Nathan Rooney and the midfielder hammered home a wonderful 25-yard strike into the bottom corner with Weymouth goalkeeper Jason Matthews rooted to the spot.

That sparked Corby into life and they were unfortunate not to go in at half-time in front.

Berwick cut in from the right and hit a left-footed shot that Matthews palmed away and then, just a few moments later, Berwick went even closer when his strike across goal cannoned off the post.

The Steelmen did continue that momentum into the second half and they went in front nine minutes after the restart.

The build-up was neat and it ended with a cross being floated in from the right-wing. Stuart Hendrie met it with an acrobatic overhead-kick and the ball found its way in with the aid of a deflection.

Almost immediately, Luke Burbidge sent a shot across the Corby goal but, from there, the game became scrappy with few chances for either side.

Wright shot wide from Hendrie’s cross for the hosts but Weymouth gradually clawed their way back into things and there was a warning for Corby when Michael Walker headed wide from a corner.

But the Steelmen heeded the warning and, two minutes later, killed the game off with a lovely move.

Hendrie found new boy Verma in the area and his wonderful flick back to Hendrie allowed the forward to pass the ball into the bottom corner.

Verma had a late effort blocked after brilliant work from Berwick but another goal wasn’t needed as the Steelmen defence remained fairly untroubled.

The job was done after a slow start and join-managers Wright and Andrew Wilson will be hoping it is the start of a rise up the table.

Steelmen: P Walker; Thomas, Malone (sub Jelleyman, 21 mins), Gascoigne, Carruthers; Rooney (sub Fox, 68 mins); S Hendrie, McGowan, Ives, Berwick; Wright (sub Verma, 74 mins). Subs not used: Carpenter, Healy.

Weymouth: Matthews; Wells, N Walker, Poole, M Walker; Burbidge, Clay (sub Ford, 69 mins), Joyce, S Walker; Groves (sub Winsper, 84 mins), Yetton. Subs not used: McConnell, Holland, Cafer.

Referee: Jonathan Burridge.

Goals: Wright og (14 mins, 0-1), Rooney (40 mins, 1-1), S Hendrie (54 mins, 2-1), S Hendrie (80 mins, 3-1).

Bookings: Thomas, Wells, Joyce (all fouls).

Attendance: 390.