Hardy’s superb strike kicks off new Silverlands era in style

Buxton v Hyde.'Liam Hardy pulls the trigger to score Buxton's first goal on their new surface.
Buxton v Hyde.'Liam Hardy pulls the trigger to score Buxton's first goal on their new surface.

A superb second half strike by Liam Hardy got the new Silverlands era off to a positive start and gave Buxton their first win of the season on Bank Holiday Monday, in a 1-0 victory over Hyde United.

Hardy’s goal was totally befitting the magnificent occasion that was the unveiling of the major changes around the ground during the summer - not least the prestine 4G playing surface.

Buxton v Hyde.

Buxton v Hyde.

Many of the 712-strong bumper crowd, including Cheshire League championship-winning player Robin Hughes, expressed their delight in and gratitude for the new-look stadium.

Until the 54th-minute the exchanges had been evenly contested but the introduction of Bradley Grayson only a few minutes earlier after skipper Greg Young had suffered a back injury in a tumble proved decisive.

Grayson’s midfield performances had been a revelation pre-season and the Bucks had certainly missed his incisive play during his injury absence and how that was shown when his fine pass released Hardy to net from 20 yards with the kind of power-drive he relishes.

The quality of the goal lifted his team-mates but all wasn’t plain-sailing thereafter as 10 minutes later a Josh Meade error presented visiting striker Pratt with Hyde’s best chance but he shot wide.

Buxton v Hyde.'Josh Meade is at full stretch in the second half.

Buxton v Hyde.'Josh Meade is at full stretch in the second half.

Buxton had again made changes after Saturday’s Workington expedition, with Brown restored to the five-man defence in place of the unavailable Alastair Taylor, while winger Jude Oyibo replaced Gee. Hyde’s advantages were in having had a comfortable 5-1 FA Cup home win over Sheffield FC two days earlier, plus having experience of a very similar surface at their own Ewen Fields.

Generally, however, United, not committing anything extra to attack late on, failed to disturb the composure of the sound home defence that also benefitted from any number of offside decisions versus Hyde attackers.

BUXTON: Roberts, Meade, Brown, N Degirolamo, G Young, Dean, D Degirolamo, A Young (Grayson), Chippendale, Hardy (Coppin), Oyibo (Gee). Subs not used: Ravenhill and Budtz.

Buxton v Hyde.'Jude Oyibo charges towards the Hyde goal.

Buxton v Hyde.'Jude Oyibo charges towards the Hyde goal.

Buxton v Hyde.'Theo Roberts rises to claim an on target attempt.

Buxton v Hyde.'Theo Roberts rises to claim an on target attempt.

Buxton v Hyde.'The pristine 3G pitch.

Buxton v Hyde.'The pristine 3G pitch.

Buxton v Hyde.'Liam Hardy watches has his second half goal flies into the back of the net.

Buxton v Hyde.'Liam Hardy watches has his second half goal flies into the back of the net.

Buxton v Hyde.'Liam Hardy celebrates his second half goal, and Buxton's first on their new all weather surface.

Buxton v Hyde.'Liam Hardy celebrates his second half goal, and Buxton's first on their new all weather surface.

Buxton v Hyde.'Liam Hardy is mobbed by his team mates after scoring his second half goal, and Buxton's first on their new all weather surface.

Buxton v Hyde.'Liam Hardy is mobbed by his team mates after scoring his second half goal, and Buxton's first on their new all weather surface.

Buxton v Hyde.

Buxton v Hyde.