Oxford City 1
Solihull Moors 2
SOLIHULL had an even return from their Easter exertions, recording a superb winning away against Oxford City and then battling all the way in a 3-2 defeat to Gloucester City, writes John Clothier.
Last Saturday, Moors travelled to Oxford with three of the usual back four suspended, Luke Connolly ill and both Michael Blackwood /Reece Fleet injured. Marcus Bignot recalled Andre Francis to the club and bloodied Youth Team defender Jo Ballinger along with Karl Broadhurst while Captain Tom Kemp made a welcome return from injury.
Solihull took the lead on 11 minutes when playmaker Gary Birch laid on the perfect pass to Darryl Knights who put Junior English through to rifle the ball into the top of the net. Moors then extended their lead on 21 minutes when Birch collected the ball outside of the 18 yard line, looked up and lobbed the keeper.
Oxford opened the second half with more purpose and on 53 minutes broke down the left flank and as Moors failed to clear the cross, a simple tap in gave Oxford a goal.
Birch was back in the thick of things on the hour mark when he collected the ball on the 18 yard line, skipped past two defenders and produced a measured curler forcing an excellent save. At the other end Jas Singh was in commanding form in the Solihull goal.
This was a bruising encounter which brought little sympathy from the officials but the under strength Solihull side thoroughly deserved their win.
Solihull are away to high flying Harrogate Town on Saturday April 6.