Jon Boardman - added to defensive worries
Hungerford Town 1 Cirencester Town 2
VETERAN striker Charlie Griffin underlined his pedigree with the two goals that continued Hungerford’s in and out flirtation with the Evo Stik League’s Southern’s play-off spots.
The 36-year old showed his finishing prowess with a pair of clinical finishes as Hungerford found themselves with more than enough problems with a re-shaped back line.
With Matt Day and James Rusby suspended, they also saw Jon Boardman limping off midway through the opening half and were forced into all manner of re-jigging as they were already chasing the game.
Hungerford had surged forward early on and Alan O’Brien hooked the ball against the inside of the post before Cirencester struck from their first serious raid after 16 minutes, on-loan Zak Kotwica getting in behind the defence to cut the ball back for the unmarked Griffin to drive the ball past Paul Strudley.
Boardman went down and out of the game three minutes later and Hungerford laboured to rekindle their early spark before being caught out again just before the interval when Ollie Knight got in and again Griffin found time to control the ball before tucking it into the bottom corner.
It looked as if Hungerford might stage a recovery when they pulled one back three minutes into the second period, Nat Jarvis heading home an O’Brien corner, but despite sacrificing another defender and pitching in the club’s entire striking recourses, their best chance was a blazed effort over the top from James Clark as the Cirencester defence coped superbly with whatever was thrown at them.
A win would have cemented Hungerford’s top five spot, but now they have to bid to make another return to the positions when they entertain Slough Town on Monday with Day and Scott Rees back in the fold but Boardman a doubt.
Hungerford Town: Strudley; Tyler, Horgan, Boardman, John; Clark, Herring, Jones, O’Brien; Jarvis, A. Brown,. Subs: Goodger, Preen, Draycott, Berry-Hargreaves, Harrison.
Cirencester Town: Langley; A. Brown, Anson, Pritchett, Prictor; Kotwice, Mortimer-Jones, Liddiard, Hooper, Knight; Griffin. Subs: Dinsmore, Connolly, Bower, Bevan, Langworthy.