Match Report: Bishop’s Stortford Swifts Reserves 3-2 Roydon

A 90th-minute goal from Ollie Fortune was enough for three points for the Swifts Reserves as they beat Roydon to win their fourth home game on the spin.

Neither side dominated the first-half, but it was the hosts who made the most of their dominance in the second-half to record their 8th win of the season.

It was a strong start to the game for the host as they looked to come forward in the opening minutes. Ollie Fortune had a shot from distance, but his effort was comfortably held by the keeper. Although the Swifts had made the most positive start to the second half, they were almost caught out as Mohameed Benzid won the ball and played it through to Arif Qurestri, but the pass was too heavy and ran out of play.

The Reserves were almost ahead as the keeper spilled the ball from an Ewan Rockwell free-kick, but the rebounded effort was just wide in a crowded area. The pressure paid off a couple of minutes later as the hosts took the lead. Chris Jennings drew first blood as he fired a long-distance free-kick beyond the keeper and into the bottom corner.

The visitors looked to come forward and won an unexpected corner but made nothing of the set-piece before the Swifts looked to counter, but Roydon defended well. Jennings was almost in for his second goal of the afternoon, but a bounce took the ball away from the midfielder and the chance was gone. Minutes later, the hosts were almost in again as Archie Gerard found himself in plenty of space, but his effort was fired over. Luke Sykes fired a shot over for the hosts before it was the turn of the visitors to come forward. Tom Harnack pulled off a superb block to deny Nader Benzid before Steve Banks fired over the rebound.

The pressure from the visitors was worth it as they equalised in the 32nd-minute. Mohameed Benzid found some space on the edge of the box and fired it beyond the keeper. A minute later, they had almost taken the lead, but the shot was inches wide. It didn’t take long for the visitors to take the lead, as Olu Olaniyan fired a shot beyond the keeper from the edge of the box.

Both sides had chances before the break but couldn’t add to the tally. Mohameed Benzid fired over from close range, before Jennings fired an effort from distance towards an empty net for the hosts but saw his effort sail over the bar.

The hosts had the earliest chances of the second half as Callum Blair Park delivered a ball into the box, but his free-kick was header over and Fortune saw his effort saved by Tom Gardner. Neither side dominated much of the ball, but it was the host who came forward as Blair Park saw an effort fly over the bar.

The equlaiser came after the great start to the second half as Ollie Fortune fired a 30-yard effort beyond the keeper. The goal gave the hosts confidence as they continued to come forward. Nino Olaosebikan looked to run beyond the Roydon defence, but was brought down outside the box and the resulting free-kick was tipped over the bar by the keeper. Minutes later, the host were agonisingly close to taking the lead as Rockwell headed just wide of the post from a long throw.

The hosts continued to dominate as the game entered the final ten-minutes with Fortune heading just wide of the post. A minute later, Roydon were almost gifted a goal as the ball was headed just beyond the post from a defender. The resulting corner found Mohameed Benzid, but his effort only found the side-netting.

Gavin Cockman looked to get the hosts back on the front-foot as Perrett’s men looked for a winner, but Cockman’s fires a shot over the bar and Blair Park could only deliver a cross out of play. Rockwell looked to have won it in the 88th-minute as he shot from close range, but his effort was wide as he didn’t get the right contact on it. That didn’t matter though, as minutes later, the Reserves took the lead. Cockman squared the ball to Fortune, who tapped home from close range. Despite trying to bring the ball forward, the visitors faced their second defeat on the bounce.

Photos: Lewis Murphy (@BMMedia12)