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Report: Town 3-2 Blackpool

20 February 2016

NICKY Ajose's hat-trick sealed a 3-2 win for the Town against Blackpool at the County Ground, writes Adrian Smith.

Tom Aldred had given Blackpool a second minute lead but Ajose levelled in the 17th minute and then put the Robins ahead in the 61st minute. Danny Philliskirk restored parity from the penalty spot in the 65th minute but Ajose’s persistence in the 88th minute saw him seal the win with a shot from the edge of the area.

Luke Williams gave new signing Jamie Sendles-White his debut and recalled Brandon Ormonde-Ottewill, Fabien Robert and Drissa Traore against Blackpool who started the match five points behind Town in 18th position.

Blackpool kicked off on a blustery afternoon playing towards the 888Sport Town End and took the lead in the second minute when Tom Aldred headed home from the first corner of the match. 

Town had made four changes from the team who won at Colchester and had to wait until the 17th minute to draw level. Jon Obika fired in a shot from the right wing which was spilled by ‘Pool 'keeper Doyle and Nicky Ajose gleefully prodded the ball home from close range for his 17th goal of the season.

Former Town loanee Mark Yeates tried his luck from 25 yards but his deflected shot was gathered cleanly by Vigouroux in the 26th minute.

Fabien Robert then had a shot from 20 yards which was deflected for a corner but that was cleared by the ‘Pool defence.

Some neat build up play by Ajose and Ormonde-Ottewill led to Ajose firing in a powerful shot which was deflected for a corner but that was eventually cleared.

Drissa Traore earned a yellow card for tripping a Blackpool player as he tried to charge towards the Town goal in the 37th minute.

Town were awarded a free kick in the 45th minute for a foul on Obika near the edge of the penalty area and Ajose stepped up to send in a dipping shot which went narrowly over the crossbar with the 'keeper scrambling across his line.

Town started the second half brightly with Obika taking possession on the edge of the area before firing in a shot which was parried by the keeper and the ball was cleared. Shortly afterwards Robert also had an opportunity on the far edge of the box but his shot went straight to the 'keeper, Doyle.

Town had two corners in quick succession which led to Nathan Thompson needing treatment for a knock taken when he headed the ball over the crossbar in the 56th minute.

Brad Barry tried his luck from 25 yards but his powerful shot was well taken by the keeper in the 60th minute.  Barry was again involved in setting up Town’s second goal when his cross was parried by the 'keeper only for Nicky Ajose to bundle the ball home to give a lead to the Robins in the 61st minute.

The visitors were awarded a penalty for a trip by Barry on a ‘Pool player and up stepped Danny Philliskirk to level the scores in the 65th minute with a powerful penalty which gave Vigouroux no chance to delight the 350 visiting fans.

Drissa Traore was replaced by Louis Thompson before the restart.

Ellis Iandolo replaced Robert in the 74th minute  and Town built some momentum leading to a corner in the 78th which was cleared.

Barry saw a yellow card for tripping Mark Cullen after losing possession on the halfway line in the 82nd minute.

Ormonde-Ottewill tried his luck from 20 yards but his effort was deflected behind for a corner but that was cleared .

Nicky Ajose capped a superb afternoon for himself when he took possession in the 88th minute before scoring with a shot from the edge of the area to give him his first hat trick in Town colours. Louis Thompson had played his part in the build up to the goal with a surging run through midfield.

The visitors resorted to long balls in the 5 minutes of added time and eventually were awarded a free kick leading to a free header for Aimson but Vigouroux snatched the ball cleanly and that proved to be the last action of a match which saw the Robins recover from the early setback to take all three points.

The win moves the Robins into 15th place in League One with 42 points from 32 matches played.

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