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Blues beaten 2-1 at Braintree Town

10 July 2013

Blues suffer first defeat of pre-season

Blues’ third pre-season game of the season ended in defeat as Conference side Braintree Town won 2-1.

The hosts went ahead early on when Sean Marks headed home but an own goal from Matt Paine drew Blues level.

But substitute Nicky Symons scored a low 20-yard drive with five minutes remaining to earn the hosts victory.

With Ryan Cresswell ill, Aaron Tatham stepped in to the heart of defence alongside Chris Barker in the only change from the side that finished at Bishop’s Stortford on Tuesday night.

There had been early goals in both of Blues’ friendlies so far, and it happened again this evening as Marks scored the easiest of headers after good persistence from Dan Holman.

Blues levelled in the 26th minute after good work from Ben Coker and pressure from Kane Hemmings resulted in Paine inadvertently looping the ball over his own goalkeeper.

Will Atkinson replaced Kevan Hurst at half-time before Phil Brown made ten changes on the 60 minute mark.

Neither side was really able to create a clear-cut chance, James Mulley going closest for the hosts with a 20-yard drive.

Substitute, and trialist, Jacob Erskine had Blues’ best chance but couldn’t get enough on his header from Cleveland Taylor’s cross.

Jack Payne also went close with a curling effort from 20-yards. His shot though flew just wide of the far post.

The winner came with five minutes to go as Symons picked up a loose ball, drove forward and struck a sweet drive into the bottom corner.

Blues now have five days before they are in action again; away at Chelmsford City on Monday night, kick-off 7:45pm.

Starting XI: Bentley; White, Tatham, Barker, Coker; Straker, Hurst (Atkinson 45), Laird, Scott; Eastwood, Hemmings.

Second XI (All 60 mins): Smith; Auger, Phillips, Prosser, Bruno; Taylor, Payne, Atkinson, Silva; Erskine, Njie.

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