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Hardy’s late brace seals another win for Buxton

Liam Hardy now has eight goals this season.
Liam Hardy now has eight goals this season.

Full points was Buxton’s reward as they bounced back to form with a 4-2 win at Stamford’s new stadium on Tuesday evening.

There were a few alarms on the way but the second half saw the visitors’ quality shine through to win in some style by the end.

Looking for a first home success, Stamford’s six previous matches had produced as many as 40 goals and the evening’s fare was again highly productive in that respect.

However, the first half was played at a frantic pace with little passing amid some bizarre refereeing.

Jamie Green saw yellow after he had been impeded by an unpunished shirt-pull, Joel Bembo-Leta was penalised when he won the ball with a perfectly legitimate tackle and worst of all the opening goal, after a goalmouth scramble, resulted directly from a decision to award the hosts an 18th-minute corner despite Bell’s free-kick obviously clearing all and sundry.

As the interval approached Buxton posed an increasing threat and equalised immediately before the break.

Bradley Barraclough fastened onto a throw-in and threaded his 12-yard shot into the only space available for his first goal since returning to the club.

This proved a major turning-point as was the case when Stamford’s King missed the target with a header at a corner early in the second half.

Buxton counter-attacked and forced a corner from which Brad-Lee Gascoigne scored with a soaring header; his first goal for the club.

At this stage the Bucks were looking comfortable but suffered a 66th-minute setback with a Stamford equaliser.

Again, it came from a goalmouth scramble but this time resulted from a throw-in.

However, six minutes later the visitors led again with a high-quality goal.

Surrounded by opponents, Barraclough worked a fine pass to Liam Hardy who drove the ball low beyond `keeper Knight into the far side of the goal.

Inspired by their success, the visitors went close to doubling their advantage.

Barraclough again set up Hardy whose shot hit Knight for Barraclough to fire the rebound low and diagonally towards the far post where defenders struggled to clear.

Barraclough then turned well and shot narrowly wide before sub Alex Wiles drove in a low cross from the right only to see it blocked.

With five minutes left a glorious Wiles pass released Hardy and he again found the net with a firm low drive for his eighth of the campaign.

Bucks: Barnes, Belezika, Gascoigne, Bembo-Leta, Green, Burbeary, Ravenhill, Burrell, Buckley (Wiles 62), Barraclough, Hardy (Churchman 90).