Workington’s long unbeaten run came to an abrupt halt on their first visit to the Rylands Recreation club. They failed to collect point(s) for the first time in twenty nine outings yet played their part in a cracking game which proved a good advertisement for Step 4 football.
And newcomers Rylands proved that they are not here just to make up the numbers as, for the second game in succession, they toppled the league leaders. They won at previous table-toppers Mossley at the weekend then became the first team this term to take all three points from Chris Willcock’s side.
Reds have laboured in recent performances yet obtained the points but they played very well on this occasion to no avail. Swings and roundabouts I suppose.
With a strong wind and torrential rain at their backs, the bizarre conditions favoured the visitors in the first half and they were in control of the situation. Once the deluge eased, it became a more open contest particularly in the second half with chances created at both ends of the pitch.
The best chance for Reds in the first half saw Iyrwah Gooden’s close range header acrobatically turned over the bar by Rylands’ skipper and ‘keeper, Graeme McCall.
Jim Atkinson made an equally important stop at the other end thwarting Kane Drummond who had earlier squandered a similar opportunity.
The home side lost the services of Charlie Doyle after what looked a painful shoulder injury and then Matty Hughes went down in a heap after a wonderfully timed Donae Lawrence tackle. Thankfully, Hughes was able to resume.
Two goals in quick succession on the hour put Rylands in control.
They went in front after sixty two minutes when Owen Robinson tapped home Callum Dolan’s low cross from the left with Reds’ undone by the pace of the home attack.
Three minutes later, Drummond made it third time lucky with a well taken second goal. Released by Declan Walker’s assist, the winger rounded Atkinson to score from an acute angle.
Reds, for the first time in a while, were rocking but they responded superbly and went on to dominate the final twenty minutes although the Blues were showing great resilience.
Steven Rigg, arriving at the far post, converted a low cross via his hip in the seventieth minute and it was game on.
The inspirational Conor Tinnion was everywhere and brought the best out of McCall with a low shot which was pushed away for a corner then, when the two captains were next in focus, it was Tinnion’s curling shot which got the better of the ‘keeper only to rebound off the crossbar.
A great effort from both teams considering the hostile conditions but it was the hosts who were celebrating at the final whistle. The taste of defeat, after the impressive 28 match unbeaten sequence, must have been bitter for Reds but they will be regroup and go again when league activities resume next week.
Warrington Rylands: McCall, Walker, Tinning, Smith, Egerton-Wilson, Earl, Doyle (Scarisbrick, 33), Coveney, Hughes (Dolan, 46), Robinson, Drummond (Morris, 79). Substitutes – Lees, Wall (not used).
Workington: Atkinson, Clarke, Lawrence (Lightfoot C, 87), Wordsworth, Harrison, Casson, Gooden (Carroll, 75), Rigg, Rowe (Jerome, 75), Tinnion, Gaul. Substitute – Eccles (not used).
Referee: Jon Wyatt, Manchester
Bookings: Coveney (Warrington Rylands), Rigg, Casson (Workington)