Stamford AFC were beaten 3-2 at home to Rushall Olympic in the Evo-Stik NPL last night (Tuesday) to continue their tough start to the season.
Rushall got off to the perfect start, netting inside the first four minutes.
Luke Benbow scored his first goal for the visitors with a 25-yard free-kick which went in off the posts.
After a lull in the game which saw some scrappy play the Daniels began to build into the match and last season’s top scorer Ryan Robbins took the game by the scruff of the neck.
He went close on the half hour mark when he saw a shot just deflected over the crossbar by Rushall’s Gavin Caines.
After a Rushall raid ended in a shot off target Robbins got closer to levelling the game for Stamford.
First he forced Pics keeper Dean Coleman into a save from a weak shot and then sent a header goalwards which the keeper had to react to.
Eventually the breakthrough came in the 43rd minute but it was not Robbins who found the back of the net it was skipper for the night Jordan Smith. However inevitably Robbins was heavily involved in the build up, crossing to his strike partner who got the volley all wrong, hitting the ball into the ground but fortuitously it bounced over the helpless Rushall keeper.
Just 60 seconds later Robbins gave Stamford the lead to complete a remarkable turn around before half time. He raced onto a long ball from defender Tom Batchelor and finished well from about ten yards out.
After the break the Pics came out with intent and from the opening minutes of the half they were putting pressure on the Stamford goal with Ethan Delaney, Benbow, Kris Taylor, Michael McGrath and substitute Malachi Farquharson all having efforts for the visitors before they finally brought the scores level in the 71st minute. Jack Duggan got the goal, heading in Taylor’s cross.
Twelve minutes from time Rushall compounded Stamford’s despair with a winner from replacement Bilal Yafai, who was on the spot to tap in from close range after Stamford stopper Richard Knight failed to hold onto a stinging volley from Duggan.
Stamford have now lost their first two league games of the season, both from winning positions, having gone down 6-3 to Nantwich Town on Saturday after leading 2-0 and then 3-2.
They host Ashton United at the Zeeco Stadium on Saturday, kick-off 3pm.
Stamford AFC: Richard Knight, Dalton Bettles, Eddy Samba (Jordan Neil 87), Cameron Powell, Lewis Carr, Tom Batchelor, Andy Hall, Jon Challinor, Greg Smith (Dan Clements 77), Jordan Smith (C), Ryan Robbins
Subs not used: Richard Jones, Elliott Bentley, David Staff
Rushall Olympic: Dean Coleman, Aris Christophorou, Jamie Smith, Kris Taylor, Jack Duggan, Gavin Caines (C), Ethan Delaney (Bilal Yafai 68), Carl Palmer, Luke Benbow (Zak Martin 81), Michael McGrath, Alex Reid (Malachi Farquharson 59)
Subs not used: Joe Sinton, Callum Williams
Referee: Mr Neil Pratt