Tuesday, March 29, 2006

A CHORUS of boos greeted the final whistle at Aggborough last night as Kidderminster Harriers trudged dejectedly off having been outplayed by a classy Grays Athletic.

The final score was 5-0 to the visitors -- taking to nine the tally of goals Mark Yates' side have conceded in their last two Nationwide Conference home games.

But it was the manner of the defeat which was most worrying.

The fact centre-half Gavin Hurren was named as man-of-the-match says much for how little Kidderminster created up front.

Harriers took the early initiative and Simon Russell picked up the ball in the first minute and charged forward only to be halted by a last-ditch tackle as he prepared to shoot.

Then, in the sixth minute, Harriers' fragile confidence was blown apart when Grays took the lead through Dennis Oli. The former-QPR player capitalised on an error by Harriers goalkeeper John Danby to tap the ball into an empty net.

Yates' men huffed and puffed but could not find a way back into the game and Grays frequently cut the home side to shreds.

Michael Kightly extended his side's lead on 32 minutes when he drilled in a low shot.

Harriers kept out the visitors until the break, but Yates was left fuming on the touchline when Grays made it 3-0 moments after the restart.

Johnny Mullins fouled Oli 22 yards out and Glenn Poole's low free-kick clipped the wall and wrong-footed Danby on its way into the net.

Goal number four came on 70 minutes, when Mark DeBolla was felled by Danby for a penalty. Captain Stuart Thurgood made no mistake.

Harriers' misery was complete in the 88th minute when substitute Gary Hooper strolled through to slot the ball past Danby.

Harriers: Danby, Rea, Harkness (Thompson h-t), Burgess (Hurren, 35), Fleming, Blackwood, Sheldon, Russell, Penn, Newby, Mullins.

Attendance: 1,220.