HELLENIC LEAGUE: Fairford back on top after away success

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Fairford Town moved back to the top of Hellenic Division One West after thumping lowly Woodstock 8-1, writes Josh Bird.

The comfortable triumph in Oxfordshire sees Fairford move ahead of previous leaders Hook Norton on goal difference, but boss Gareth Davies isn’t getting too carried away with his side’s fine run of league form.

“We’ve just got to focus and take every game as it comes,” Davies said.

“To win this league you have to dig deep and grind out results and that’s what we have to keep doing.”

Fairford made a slow start to the encounter and fell behind on 20 minutes as Ryan Thorne opened the scoring.

Jason Milhench was on hand to ensure the score was level pegging at the interval before Josh Morse put the visitors in front on 54 minutes.

Milhench then bagged his second goal before Levi Cox, on his debut after signing from Shrivenham on Friday, netted to make it 4-1.

Home player Kieran Strange was then shown a red card and Fairford capitalised with goals in quick succession from Cox and Lee Smith.

Jack Ellis was on target for Fairford’s seventh, having just been introduced from the bench, before Cox completed the rout and his own debut hat-trick.

“In the first half I actually thought we were really poor,” Davies said.

“We weren’t really up to scratch but in the second half it was like looking at a different side.

“We just needed to be prepared because I knew today was a potential banana skin, and I think some of the lads perhaps underestimated the opposition.

“But at the end of the day we got a good three points and that’s what mattered.”

And Davies was pleased to have finally secured the signing of Cox who had been Shrivenham’s top scorer so far this term with six goals in 11 matches.

“It took a bit longer than we wanted but we got there in the end.

“It was late last night when everything was finally sorted and he’s come in today and scored three.

“That’s what he’s here to do and he took his goals really well, it was a good debut.”

Elsewhere in Division One West, Purton moved up into fourth position after overcoming Letcombe 2-1.

Purton were fast out the blocks and led after nine minutes before Jordi Davies fired the home side level.

But the winner came ten minutes from time as Purton recorded a fourth straight league success.

In the Premier Division, Highworth Town were 3-2 away winners at Oxford City Nomads.

After a goalless first half, an Ashley Edenborough hat-trick put Highworth in a commanding position before the Nomads mounted a late comeback but couldn’t earn themselves a point.