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Histon 1 – 2 Frome Town – Southern Premier league, Sat. 9th Aug

Frome Town started the season in fine form with a 2-1 win at far distant Histon FC thanks to a penalty from Mark Francis and a headed goal from Jack Vallis,  in a match played in good spirit even though three red cards were shown.

Frome included new signings Jack Twyford, Mark Francis, Ollie Taylor and Alex Rigby in their starting line up, with another new Lewis Pierre taking his place in goal as Darren Chitty was unavailable for this match.

Frome made all the early running and a deflected Matt Smith shot brought a good save from Enol Ordonez in the 9th minute after he had been put through by Jon Vance, and six minutes later Francis again tested Ordonez after good work on the right by Smith and Twyford.

As the match settled, Francis again brought a save from Ordonez in the 28th minute after he was put through by Vance, and five minutes later Histon produced their first meaningful attack of the game as good work by Ashley White set up Mateusz Kuzimski to run at the Frome defence and shoot just wide.

Ricky Hulbert replaced Ollie Taylor in the 33rd minute due to an injury, and captain Josh Ford headed a Vance free kick just wide a few minutes later before Histon produced another dangerous moment as Ben Sawyer set up Kuzimski to run in and shoot just over the bar.

The second half saw Histon look quicker out of the blocks and the impressive Pierre made a good save in the 49th minute to deny the home side the opening goal.

Histon’s Joe Burgess picked up his second yellow card of the game in the 53rd minute for a foul on Vance and the home side were reduced to 10 men for the rest of the match. However, they looked possibly more dangerous, and after Kuzimski had headed just over the bar in the 61st, they took the lead in the 65th with an impressive goal from Joe Peacock who waltzed through four Frome defenders before planting his shot firmly into the far corner.

The lead lasted for six minutes until Frome’s Francis was tripped as he ran into the penalty area and he picked himself up to score easily from the spot and level the scores.

Frome took the lead three minutes later as a Vance corner was swung into the box with everyone going up for the ball, but Jack Vallis rose the highest and headed home with the home keeper Ordonez flat on the floor, though it was far from clear how it happened. Despite protests from the home crowd and team, the referee and assistants ruled that no foul had been committed and the goal stood.

After Hulbert had a shot saved in the 83rd minute, Kris Miller was shown a straight red for kicking out after the ball had gone, and in the 96th minute Matt Smith was shown a second yellow for a trip, with the resultant free kick the last action of the match.

Jack Vallis was awarded the H&B Tyres “Man of the Match Award” for an outstanding performance at centre back.