“The impressive Lobjoit turned full back Nkosi Mzungwana inside out.”
Corby Town continue to find different ways of slumping to defeat as they ended this trip to Chasetown FC with just nine players on the field. Goalkeeper Paul Bastock has played over 1,000 senior games in his long career but this must surely rank as the shortest of them.
There were just five minutes on the clock when Bastock and Paul Malone closed ranks to tidy up a harmless through ball. As Malone hesitated and Muzzy Nduna moved in it became a far less harmless ball, especially when Molly's back pass fell short of its intended recipient. Bazza attempted to rectify the situation by challenging the forward but was judged to have fouled him just outside the penalty area.
After awarding the free kick referee Mr Steve Durnall took his time before reaching into his pocket but when he did the card he produced was red. Corby did have Sam Wilson on the bench to take over between the posts but supporters seriously questioned the decision to sacrifice Jordan Crawford. When your numbers are reduced you surely cannot replace a player who has the appetite to do the running of two men.
Anyway, Chasetown skipper Jimmy O'Neill took the resulting free kick but blasted it into the Corby wall. Minutes later Wilson faced his first test when he had to get down quickly to save a low shot by George Cater.
The Steelmen were also being seen as an attacking force and Scholars' goalkeeper Curtis Pond smothered a low attempt by Leon Lobjoit after the debutant had linked up well with fellow loanee from Northampton Town Lewis Irwin.
Will Whieldon then hit a shot over the bar for Chasetown and the home supporters were becoming more frustrated as their goalscoring attempts became more wayward.
Corby then came within inches of breaking the deadlock when Irwin shaped himself skilfully to head against the crossbar from a Lee Beeson centre.
Seconds before half time, however, Corby's resistance was finally broken. A cross by Michael Williams was headed out to Chris Baker who teed up Richard Smith for a shot which was pushed out at full stretch by Wilson. As the Steelmen defence stood around like statues Whieldon reacted to crash his first effort against the post and a second into the net.
David Bell's half time response was to bring on Dan Bendon for Steven Leslie but whatever plans he had made were in tatters just seven minutes after the restart. Nduna had already had already skied a close range shot high over the bar from a pass by Josh Sedgeley before the Corby defence again failed to deal with a centre by Williams and Nduna this time made no mistake to make it 2-0.
To Corby's credit they continued to push forward and Lobjoit was unfortunate that the ball would not drop for him as he attempted to take it round Pond and he was forced wide to hit his shot into the side netting from a narrow angle. Minutes later Pond dropped on the ball virtually on the goal line with Ben Diamond in close attendance.
The Steelmen finally broke through in the 72nd minute when a shot by Lobjoit was blocked on the line and Sam Warburton fired the rebound into the net. At this point an equaliser was not totally out of the question but Corby were unable to create another clear opportunity. The impressive Lobjoit turned full back Nkosi Mzungwana inside out and back again but Pond claimed his centre with insufficient Corby pressure to worry him.
In the final minute of normal time Nduna broke away and was challenged illegally by Jason Lee who received the second red card of the evening - an evening Corby will not recall with any great satisfaction.
CHASETOWN FC:- Curtis Pond; Michael Williams, Nkosi Mzungwana; Richard Smith (substitute Luke Davies), Josh Sedgeley (substitute Jack Lovatt), Jimmy O'Neill (captain); George Cater (substitute Nick Wellecomme), Chris Baker, Muzzy Nduna, Will Whieldon, Ryan Winter. Unused substitutes: Chad Degville-Cross, Callum Lovatt.
CORBY TOWN:- Paul Bastock; Jamie Anton, Steven Kinniburgh; Paul Malone, Jason Lee (captain), Lee Beeson; Ben Diamond, Steven Leslie (substitute Dan Bendon), Lewis Irwin (substitute Sam Warburton), Leon Lobjoit, Jordan Crawford (substitute Sam Wilson (GK). Unused substitutes: Sam Mulready, Philip Trainer.
REFEREE:- Mr Steve Durnall.
Updated 15:57 - 5 Oct 2017 by James McCafferty