Saturday 29th April 2000
Northern Premier League Premier Division
Runcorn: Acton, Salt, Carragher, Chantler, Burke, Ruffer, Tomlinson, Robinson, McNally, McAllister, Moseley. Subs: Rose, Brunskill, Benson.
Hyde United: Graham Bennett, John Foster, Paul Robertson, Gus Wilson, Paul Taylor, Peter Band, Lloyd Richardson (Mark Hall), Neil Hall, Simon Yeo, Jody Banim (Steve Tobin), Ally Pickering (Matty Taylor)
Hyde now have the chance to secure second place if they beat Bamber Bridge on Wednesday. This is thanks to an excellent all round performance at Canal Street, the venue which holds bad memories from the F A Trophy tie earlier in the season. The Linnets had the better of the opening exchanges and Graham Bennett made a great reaction save to deny Moseley inside the first five minutes. An excellent link up down the left saw Richardson and Band combine before Simon Yeo shot just over the top. Graham Bennett then produced the save of the match to deny a McNally drive which was heading into the top corner, clawing the ball to safety in mid-air. Hyde went in front after 35 minutes, Robertson sent the ball down the left found Yeo whose crossfield ball found Neil Hall in acres of space, he took the ball to the edge of the area, went inside the defender and shot low past Acton into the bottom corner. Runcorn were on top for the first fifteen minutes of the second period, first Bennett saved well from McNally and then the strikers next effort looped off Paul Taylor but Bennett claimed at the second attempt. Going down the hill, Hyde now started to dominate and Yeo went close with a header from Hall's cross. It was no surprise in the 68th minute that the Tigers extended their lead, Richardson set Banim away on the left and his near post cross was well finished by Simon Yeo McNally again went close for the Linnets, heading over from a free kick but Hyde were now on top although the third goal owed more to good luck than anything else. In the 85th minute JohnFoster sent in a cross from the right, Runcorn goalkeeper Richard Acton didn't react as he expected Yeo to connect, but the striker missed the ball and Foster claimed his first goal for Hyde as the ball went in off the far post. Acton made up for his error in the dying moments when he saved with his legs from Steve Tobin after a great piece of skill in the penalty area gave him his chance.