After a tremendous week which saw Bracknell Town defeat fellow title rivals Thame United and Thatcham Town, they needed to be professional in their approach tonight away at struggling Henley Town to ensure the hard work of the past seven days was not undone.
Manager Mark Tallentire will have been delighted with what he saw as the Robins were too strong for a brave Henley side running out five goal victors.
Kensley Maloney returned to the starting line-up with TJ Bohane bruised after the weekend whilst Khalid Senussi also played with Seb Bowerman on the substitute’s bench.
It’s been some four a bit days for Joe Grant though. Off the bench at half time Saturday to notch up two assists followed by a hat-trick tonight including an overhead kick.
The opening goal came in the sixth minute when Carl Withers picked out Senussi who turned Chris Byrne and delivered a pinpoint ball for Grant to slot home.
Five minutes later the lead was doubled by Grant who saw his initial effort blocked but a spectacular overhead kick gave goalkeeper Matt Hill no chance.
The home side did cause some problems and might have scored between the goals when a loose back pass allowed Michael Davies to race in at goal but he narrowly missed to the right and should have scored.
The Robins looked possible scorers with virtually every attack. Adam Cornell was denied by a great Hill save from Senussi’s cross before the striker headed wide. Senussi’s then missed whilst stretching after Cornell had unselfishly squared to him.
Half Time: Henley Town 0 – 2 Bracknell Town
After the interval, Maloney found himself in but just fired over whilst Senussi headed wide left from Hill’s attempted clearance.
The game went a bit quiet with the visitors in control and Henley bereft of ideas before a 73rd minute third goal.
Carl Davies headed on only for the defender to head over Hill who had called for the ball which presented Senussi with an empty net from about five feet out and it was the simplest of finishes.
Seve Mayberry struck a free-kick which hit Grant and went out for a corner whilst Jamie McClurg shot wide as the game entered the last ten minutes.
Cornell made it four with his customary goal as he got goal side of Mitch Cooper and held off the defender to fire home following a great lofted pass by Dave Hancock.
Grant completed the scoring on 88 minutes to seal his hat-trick as McClurg and Bowerman combined down the right with the latter picking out Grant who turned inside the area and he perfectly placed his shot inside the right post.
It was a professional job from Bracknell Town who ensured last week was not undone against a game but ultimately overmatched Henley side.
Saturday is cup action as Shrivenham host the Robins before it’s a midweek trip to Oxfordshire next Tuesday when the league returns as Ardley United entertain Tallentire’s side in a 7.30pm kick-off.
Full Time: Henley Town 0 – 5 Bracknell Town
Bracknell Town: Grace, Hancock, Gray, Withers (Boon 71), Rodrigues (Sheeran 78), Davies, Grant, McClurg, Cornell (Bowerman 85), Maloney, Senussi. Sub not used: Chamberlain.