THE PLAYING SURFACE AT SHARPENHOE ROAD WAS PLAYABLE UNLIKE MANY PITCHES LOCALLY WHICH WAS CREDIT TO THE STAFF AT THE CLUB
Christmas came early for Barton Rovers yesterday as they recorded an impressive 5-1 victory over Kidlington at Sharpenhoe Road. It was 12th v 15th in The BetVictor Southern League Division One (Central) - going into the game the home side had six wins in fifteen league games - they had done something Erith Town, Bridon Ropes, Chalfont St Peter, Hartley Wintney, Enfield Town, Bowers & Pitsea and Three Bridges hadn't been able to achieve this season in beating Chichester City in a cup competition. They had recorded a 4-2 victory over the West Sussex side in the FA Trophy Preliminary Round in October.
Kidlington had league playing record in six wins in sixteen games played with just one victory away from home in seven games played which came against Coleshill Town in November. The Oxfordshire side were Hellenic Premier title winners in 2016 and moved up to Step Four of the non-league ladder have since finished 12th (Division One Central), 12th (Division One West) and 18th in Division One Central last season where they missed out on relegation by three points to Aylesbury FC and Dunstable Town.
ERIC ODHIAMBO WHO PLAYED FOR INVERNESS CALEDONIAN THISTLE FROM JANUARY 2009 TO JUNE 2011 - HE SCORED 10 GOALS IN 63 GAMES FOR THE SCOTTISH CLUB
The visitors included brother's Eric and Anaclet Odhiambo in their starting XI. Eric, 30, came through the ranks of Oxford United and Leicester City where he signed as a professional between 2006 to 2009 without breaking into the first team but did make league appearances for Dundee United and Southend United in loan spells. He then played for Inverness Caledonian Thistle, Denizilispor, Hereford United, Sligo Rovers and Brackley Town before joining Kidlington in 2015.
Anaclet, 37 years of age, counts Abingdon United, Abingdon Town, Didcot Town and Marlow as former clubs. There is also a third sibling in Eddie Odhiambo, 34, who started with Southampton and has played for a number of clubs including Stevenage Borough, Oxford United and Brackley Town during his career.
Kidlington took the lead in the 31st minute when some good interchange play between Anclet and Eric saw Anaclet to score from close range. Barton quickley equalised when Nathan Tshikuma's (on loan from AFC Rushden & Diamonds) low shot from around 25 yards out crept into the corner of the net.
Rovers took the lead early in the second half via Dean Dummett and he followed this up with a third goal for his team on 50 minutes. Dummett is one of a number of former Bedford Town players in the squad at Sharpenhoe Road.
Kidlington had chances to score with Niall Cooper in the Barton goal making a decent close range stop the stand out incident. It was only Cooper's second start for Rovers after recently joining from AFC Rushden & Diamonds - The 28 year old goalkeeper has formerly played for Redditch United, Leamington, Rugby Town, Stratford Town and Bedford Town. He had made two appearances for The Diamonds this season against Tamworth in the Southern League Premier Central and Corby Town in the Southern League Challenge Cup.
Late on in the game Charlie Smith's looping free kick from outside of the box went straight into the net - only he can tell you if he meant it or not and then Dummett scored another to complete his hat-trick with a header from close range.
The crowd was a decent figure of 181 and the result sees Barton go just six points off of Aylesbury United in fifth place (the final play-off place) so a decent run of results could see an exciting second half of the season for them.
Rover's manager Tony Fontelle will be very pleased with his team's performance going into the local derby Boxing Day game at Welwyn Garden City who are 4th in the table.
Kidlington host Wantage Town on Boxing Day. They are rooted to the bottom of the table with seventeen defeats in as many games with just six goals scored and eighty-one conceded.