A good start but Hitchin well-beaten by impressive Banbury

An early goal from Luke Brown was as good as it got for Hitchin Town as they lost away to Banbury United.

An early goal from Luke Brown was as good as it got for Hitchin Town as they lost away to Banbury United. - Credit: DANNY LOO

A great start could not be maintained as Hitchin Town fell to defeat away to Banbury United in the Southern League Premier Division Central.

Luke Brown fired the Canaries into a third-minute lead but the home side levelled before half-time with a double midway through the second period from Henry Landers sending them home empty handed.

The result lifts Banbury up to second in the table with Hitchin now down in 17th but it could have been different had the visitors maintained their positive start.

Brown's opening goal was a lovely hit snap-shot but only sufficed in waking the hosts up.

Hitchin did well to repel the early pressure even if it meant a lot of work without the ball.

Through balls to Callum Stead were their best hope of adding to their lead and although he had one reasonable chance, the speedy forward couldn't beat Jack Harding in the home goal.

But it was still more likely that Banbury would get the next goal and so it proved.

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Christopher Wreh had already seen one goal ruled out for offside when Benjamin Acquaye finished off a well-worked move to make it 1-1.

There were further home chances before the break but with the sides heading back to the dressing rooms level, Hitchin knew the possibility of getting something from the game was still highly probable.

But those hopes soon diminished as Banbury kept up their assault after half-time.

Wreh hit the post and Landers the crossbar before the latter put the Puritans ahead on the hour.

Wreh then had another one ruled out for offside before Landers made it three seven minutes later.

Mercifully that put an end to the scoring for the home side and the high number of chances but while Hitchin huffed and puffed, there never seemed any likelihood on a surprise comeback.

They had a couple of free-kicks that were saved by Harding while substitute Henry Snee went close on a couple of occasions.

The Canaries get a chance to quickly turn this performance around and hopefully add to their only win so far of the campaign when they host Royston Town at Top Field on Monday.

Hitchin Town: Charlie Horlock, Daniel Akubuine, Alex Brown, Ryan Smith, Lawrie Marsh, Darien Furlong, Alex Marsh, Josh Coldicott-Stevens, (Kye Tearle), Callum Stead, Luke Brown, (Henry Snee), Rio Dasilva, (Maliki Black).

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