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Evo-Stik Premier Division match
played on Tuesday, 10 October 2017, 7.45pm


Altrincham's second lengthy midweek trip in a month again ended in disappointment as they emerged from Whitby with a hard-earned point despite taking an early lead.

On a breezy evening on the East Coast, James Poole's left-footed shot fired them ahead in the ninth minute, following good work from Johnston and Hulme. And Altrincham could have doubled that lead when Hancock jabbed an effort against an upright and Johnston was thwarted by the legs of goalkeeper Bland when clean through on goal.

But midtable Whitby grew into the game before half-time and went on to enjoy the better of the second half. Their efforts were rewarded when their captain Snaith was on the end of a reckless foot-up challenge by Hannigan. Although the Alty defender escaped with only a yellow card, Snaith recovered to convert the resulting penalty.

Altrincham might have taken all three points in added time when Peers's effort was fumbled, but Bland regathered the ball before Richman could seize on the loose ball.

REFEREE: Derric Wade (Hartlepool)

Disney, Taylor and Amis were all still sidelined by injury. Short and Poole returned in place of Densmore and Peers.


WHITBY TOWN (Blue) 1. Shane Bland, 2. Callum Martin, 3. Dan McWilliams, 4. Andrew May, 5. Luke Bythway, 6. Steve Snaith (c), 7. Andy Monkhouse, 8. Adam Gell, 9. Dave Carson, 10. Matthew Tymon, 11. James Risbrough 12. Mike Roberts, 14. Anthony Hulme, 15. Niall McGoldrick, 16. Kyle Fryatt, 17. Kieran Weledji.

ALTRINCHAM (Red & white striped shirts, black shorts, red socks) 1. Tony THOMPSON, 2. Joel BEMBO-LETA, 3. Lewis SHORT, 4. Tom HANNIGAN, 5. Ben HARRISON, 6. Jake MOULT (c), 7. John JOHNSTON, 8. Simon RICHMAN, 9. Jordan HULME, 10. James POOLE, 11. Josh HANCOCK 12. James JONES, 14. Shaun DENSMORE, 15. Sam SHERIDAN, 16. Tom PEERS 17. Sean MILLER.


This was Altrincham's first visit to Whitby since April 2004 when they won 3-2. Mike Garnett's data provides the historical record...


On a cool and breezy night, Whitby kicked off and inside the second minute, Carson's wide, but deflected, shot won a corner on the right. Next, a Whitby defender mis-passed to Poole but he put his shot badly over the bar from 18 yards (3 mins).

Whitby had started the better of the two sides but then Johnston fired over after his first effort had been blocked (7 mins). Soon, Johnston was attacking again and now he advanced up the right and fed Hulme who beat his man and fed Poole, who netted with a fine left foot shot from 18 yards to make it 1-0 to the visitors (9 mins).

After a Whitby corner, at the other end, Hulme did brilliantly to get past his man in the box and, from the resulting shot, Hancock hit the post as he fell (11 mins).

Alty threatened again but Bland just cleared a May backpass ahead of Hulme as Alty played well now. However, Short conceded a corner with his header, but Thompson punched clear from under the bar (17 mins).

Whitby responded as Carson's freekick from the left drifted through the Alty goalmouth but no one was on the end of it, to Alty's relief.

When Carson fouled Bembo near halfway, the referee had a word after the striker had argued against the decision (21 mins). A good chance for the Robins arose when Hulme put Johnston clear on the right but his shot was well saved by the keeper's legs at the cost of a corner, which was wasted with a failed short corner routine (24 mins).

Things improved for Whitby when Martin advanced impressively from right-back to the edge of Alty's box before he was halted (26 mins). But, soon afterwards, Poole jinked past two men and his shot deflected just wide for a corner on the right, which Bland punched clear.

Both of Town's full backs now got forward as, first, a Martin cross won a corner on the right, before a header from McWilliams's inswinging corner had to be brilliantly cleared off the line by Thompson (32 mins).

Harrison cleared well from Weledji before a foot-up award against Hannigan yielded a freekick. As half-time approached, Whitby enjoyed a decent spell of play and, when Richman pulled back Snaith, he was lucky to escape a card for a professional foul (41 mins).

Before the freekick could be taken, the referee lectured and booked Hancock following an intervention by the linesman. Hancock had apparently complained about being elbowed (42 mins). And after the half-time whistle, the ref had words with Thompson and his captain Moult.

Whitby had had the better of the half's last ten minutes after Alty had scored their early goal, hit the post and forced a fine stop by Bland.

Half-Time: WHITBY TOWN 0

Apart from a Poole shot which was saved after a poor McGoldrick clearance (47 mins), it was a scrappy start to the second half by both sides. Petty fouls, mispassses and lost possession were the order of the day at this stage.

Things improved momentarily as a Johnston long ball came to Hancock, who did well to get in a good shot but the keeper saved it (55 mins).

Following a Martin cross, Hannigan's very high foot caught Snaith's head, just inside the Alty box. It couuld have been a red, but Hannigan was shown a yellow card after a penalty had been given (57 mins). After treatment, the whitby captain got up and took the spot kick himself. Thompson got a hand to it, to his left, but could not keep it out (58 mins).

Before play could resume, Carson and Thompson were involved in a spat and the Whitby striker was booked. The Town man seemed to lose his head for a while and, a couple of minutes later, the referee stopped play and lectured Harrison and Carson (62 mins).

Whitby were not allowing Altrincham time on the ball and play was generally scrappy for a spell before Hulme won a corner, which Bland punched clear (67 mins). Then, after Moult had been fouled, a quick freekick led to a Poole shot having to be tipped over the bar for a corner. After this a long tbrow by Short was punched clear only for Poole to slice a shot well over the bar.

Alty were labouring until a Short cross allowed Poole a snap shot, which was saved. For Whitby, Snaith was allowed to run but his shot was beaten out by Thompson. Now both sides made changes as Whitby's Maloney came on for Hume and Peers for Hancock was Alty's change (73 mins).

Johnston was now on the left and Peers on the right. As the final ten minutes loomed, there was a bit of posssession for Alty at last but both sides were struggling to create chances in this half.

Both sides made a further changes as Campbell came on for Weledji and Miller was introduced for Hulme (83 mins). After five more unremarkable minutes of cancelling each other out, Martin had a shot saved. And then the lively Carson saw his shot just clear the bar as Alty were on the back foot.

But in the first of three added minutes, Alty almost stole the points as a Peers shot was held by keeper Bland at the second attempt, with Richman on hand for any slip by him.

In the end, Alty were probably happy with a point, after Whitby had enjoyed the better of the second half. But it had been a half of few real chances.

A regime of eighteen league and cup games in nine weeks has to take its toll and when a 270-mile round trip after a day at work is thrown into the equarion, it cannot be surprising that performance levels will sometimes dip.

Full-Time: WHITBY TOWN 1