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FOOTBALL: Cook and Basham strike to lift City off bottom
10:00am Monday 7th October 2013 in Sport
Experienced strikers Jamie Cook and Steve Basham each struck within a minute of each other to give Oxford City their first league win of the season in a 2-1 success against Stalybridge Celtic.
Greg Wilkinson hit back for the visitors before half-time, but City showed great resolve to cling on for victory.
After a relatively quiet start the match sparked into life on 15 minutes when Basham laid the ball off to Cook just outside the penalty area.
He took a touch before drilling a shot into the bottom corner of the net to open the scoring.
And just a minute later City took a two-goal lead when Basham rose to head home a cross from Tom Winters.
A well-worked corner gave Stalybridge a lifeline after 24 minutes, with the ball eventually finding the lurking Wilkinson.
His effort took a wicked deflection and despite the best efforts of Paul Stonehouse on the goal-line, City were unable to keep the shot out.
But City were resolute and the lively Cook almost restored their two-goal cushion with a thunderous left-footed volley from outside the area which flew narrowly off-target.
City looked to see the game out in the second half and restricted their opponents to a small number of half-chances.
In fact, it was the home side who looked more likely to score and both Callum McNish and debutant Chris Palmer shot narrowly over the bar from just outside the area.
Wilkinson looked most likely to find an equaliser, but the best opportunity he could fashion was a tame curling shot from outside the area which was easily held by keeper Victor Francoz and City were comfortable winners in the end.
City’s first three-point haul of the season moves them off the bottom of the table, leapfrogging Workington.
Oxford City: Francoz, Benjamin, Stonehouse, Malone, Henderson, Willmott, McNish, Pond (Palmer 28), Basham (Symons 65), Cook (Williams 84), Winters. Subs not used: Learoyd, Clifton.
Referee: M Amphlett.
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