Express & Star

Kidderminster 0-2 Banbury United - Report

Kidderminster Harriers’ grim home form continued when they suffered another blow to their hopes of gaining a National League North play-off place by losing 2-0 against Banbury United at Aggborough.


Delighted Banbury secured their well earned win with goals from Henry Landers and substitute Jack Stevens.

Harriers have not featured in the play-off places since October 29 when they triumphed 1-0 at Banbury thanks to Ashley Hemmings’ first half winner.

Since then they have managed to keep alive their fading chance of nailing down a play-off place due to their impressive away form.

Kidderminster made a couple of changes from the side which slipped to their eighth home league defeat of the season by losing 2-1 to high-flying Brackley Town the previous Tuesday.

Goalkeeper Christian Dibble, a recent recruit from Wrexham, was called up for his debut while defender Nat Knight-Percival returned after spell on the casualty list. Krystian Pearce, however, was ruled out through injury

The Puritans, managed by former Harriers Under 23 boss Andy Whing and visiting Aggborough for the first time since 1982, had a scare on eight minutes when a low 25 yard drive by Knight-Percival flew past visiting goalkeeper Jack Harding before hitting the post and going out for a goal kick.

A couple of minutes later the hosts got themselves into another decent goalscoring position, but Tom Owen-Evans blazed high over the bar from close range.

A similar fate befell an effort from Kai Lissimore shortly afterwards when he pulled the trigger on a long range shot.

Harriers continued to be the more threatening in attack and won a free kick 25 yards out just before the half hour mark, but Hemmings fired high over the bar.

Banbury, however, went ahead against the run of play in the 34th minute when a long throw-in by Sam Brown caused problems in the Aggborough rear-guard which led to Landers poking the ball hone.

It was the lift the visitors needed and they responded by forcing two quick-fire corners which both came to nothing in the closing stages of the first half.

Harriers made a couple of changes at the start of the second period with Zak Brown and Jack Bearne replacing Owen-Evans and Ethan Freemantle.

But it was Banbury who settled down first after the break and Dibble was called on the make a super save to keep out a fierce drive by Landers.

Alert Dibble then quickly followed up by pushing away a goalbound header by Jaanai Gordon before Giorgio Rasulo had a shot whizz over the bar.

Harriers hit back with a positive raid which resulted in Amari Morgan-Smith having a header tipped over the bar by Harding who then denied the Aggborough front-runner with another good save.

Banbury wrapped up the points on 80 minutes when a free kick by Stevens rebounded off the woodwork before hitting Dibble and ending up in the back of the net

Soon after visiting substitute Slavi Spasov had a shot hit the foot of a post.

Kidderminster: Dibble; McNally (Martin, 81), Morrison, Knight-Percival; Foulkes, Hemmings; Byrne, Lissimore, Owen-Evans (Brown, 46); Freemantle (Bearne, 46), Morgan-Smith. Subs not used: Palmer, Penny.

Banbury: Harding; Reilly, Langmead, Brown, Rasulo (Spasov, 72); Acquaye, Johnson, Radcliffe, Babos; Landers, Gordon (Stevens, 72). Subs not used: Hickman, Barugh, Talbot.

Referee: Ben Wyatt.

Attendance: 2,117 (152 away fans).