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MacKenzie chief red at Butlin Road

FT: Rugby Town 2    4 Tamworth

17 July 2010

As with the previous friendly against Leamington, Gary Mills fielded two separate sides in each half with the exception of goalkeeper Ben Siegrist - his last appearance before heading on tour with his club Aston Villa - and Neil MacKenzie, but (lots) more on him later!

Debuiting the new red home kit, the first real action in the match at Butlin Road, occured when a backpass by the home side was handled by the keeper and MacKenzie thumped the deadball, from around the penalty spot area, into the wall.
Around 20 minutes in Dudley crossed from the left for Wright but he headed over from 6 yards and on the other wing Tait put in a few good balls, one of which, on 25 won a corned which fell to Wright at the far post but he was unable to finish the chance.
A very high ball was well controlled by Perry on the half hour and his pass to MacKenzie was threaded through to Wright who unfortunately blasted a low straight shot inches wide of he left hand upright with the keeper beaten.
More close calls came as the half went on with Perry crossing agonisingly accross the face of goal and Wright nodding a header wide shortly before the break.

HT: Rugby Town 0    0 Tamworth

After the restart Lake-Gaskin put a peach of a ball into the path of Craig Reid but he could only deflect the chance over the bar with his chest from a couple of yards out.
A foul on Reid shortly after set up MacKenzie to take a super-fast freekick which Lyttle recieved and crossed low for Lake-Gaskin to slot home from close range, but the referee was having none of it and ordered it to be retaken.
This time MacKenzie struck a straight low shot, unhindered, through a handy gap in the home wall and into the near corner to open the scoring (1-0, 55 mins)
Rugby pulled one back five minutes later thanks to a neat turn and shot into the far corner but on 68 The Lambs were back in front thanks to a pin-point freekick from the left wing by Mackenzie which Mitchell slid in to scramble over the line at the far post. (2-1, 68 mins)
Fairclough showed some excellent touches to try and help extend the Lambs lead, but it was MacKenzie again on 74 who finished strongly from eight yards when Farrell's parried shot from the right of the box came back out to him, to make it 3-1 (74 mins)
MacKenzie then fed Fairclough a fine through ball but with the keeper committed the latter's chip bounced out past the left hand post.
Rugby almost got themselves back in it with a rasping shot from a poor kicked clearance by Siegrist only see the effort denied by the crossbar.
However, another good finish from the edge of the area by the hosts did make it 3-2 on 85, only for MacKenzie to bag his hat-trick with three minutes remaining following Fairclough's short pass after a superb jinking run which took him past three defenders and into the area.

Tamworth Team:

1st half
Tait Marshall Wylde Dudley
Smith J (capt)
Wright Mackenzie Reid J Thomas

2nd half
Wilson Mitchell Lyttle Kasiama
Reid C
Lake-Gaskin MacKenzie (capt) Bradley Fairclough

Attendance: 250

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