Ashton utd v Nantwich Town, 2012 (pic by Simon J Newbury Photography)

By Ashley Houghton
Nantwich Town fell to their first defeat of their Evo-Stik Premier campaign, losing to a late Tom Baker goal at Ashton United.

Baker had earlier given The Robins the lead before Sean Cooke equalised for Nantwich.

But then he ran clear as Jimmy Quinn’s men searched for a winner having held a man advantage after Craig Robinson’s 67th minute red card.

The Nantwich boss made two changes to the side that beat Ilkeston, with JJ Bailey and Niall Maguire replacing Matt Lowe and Mark Beesley.

The Dabbers started brightly and went close to breaking the deadlock on 15 minutes when Cooke, a threat throughout, beat two United defenders before forcing a save from Terry Smith in the Ashton goal.

Nantwich’s best chance of the half fell to Kyle Wilson as he latched onto Maguire’s pass and rounded Smith but saw his shot cleared off the line by Robinson.

Missed chances proved costly for Quinn’s men, though, as Baker’s innocuous shot from 25 yards took a wicked bounce and deceived Jonny Brain in the Dabbers goal to give the hosts the lead.

Nantwich came out in the second-half much brighter as Caspar Hughes smashed a right-footed effort over and Maguire, who impressed on his first start of the season, went close from long range.

The Dabbers equalised on the hour as miscommunication between Smith and Ashton captain Chris Lynch, was pounced upon by Cooke who set Wilson through and then pounced on the rebound when the formerBangor City man’s shot was saved.

Nantwich looked to gain momentum from the equaliser and were handed a further advantage when Robinson was given a straight red for a late challenge on Cooke with 25 minutes left.

Mat Bailey went close to gaining the lead but twice was thwarted by Smith.

The killer blow was dealt three minutes from time as Nantwich committed men forward for a set piece.

Ashton broke on the counter when substitute Aaron Burns set Baker up to hammer home.

(pics by Simon J Newbury Photography)

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