MARCHINGTON secured promotion from Uttoxeter Sunday League Division Three with a hard-fought victory thanks to a superb performance from powerful striker Tom Wheeldon, writes GARETH FEARN.
A wonderful volley in the first half really got Marchington going when he struck a looping ball sweetly into the bottom corner, giving the keeper no chance.
It was not all plain sailing though as the Star number four managed to swerve the past a full-stretch Luke Bull to restore parity just after the break.
Both sides tried to play the ball about, though the game was fractured by niggly challenges as both midfields battled for control.
One of those challenges led to Marchington regaining the when Sam Gibbs coolly sloted a free kick into the bottom corner from 20 yards.
His pace had terrorised The Star backline all game, though it was quick thinking and precise technique that got them back in front.
Star pressed the Marchington defence after this but resolute performances from skipper Adam Johnson and Wayne Salmon meant that Bull was rarely troubled in goal, with Tom Langridge working tirelessly in front of the backline to break up play.
The clincher came from a fine cross, with Wheeldon in the thick of it again as he headed across goal only for Andrew Walker to steal it in on the line.
Ashley Young went close early on with a rasping left-footed effort as he desperately hunted his elusive first goal of the season.
Bull showed strong hands to prevent a one-on-one goal on the only occasion Star got in behind the rearguard.
Marchington Bull’s Head only joined the league this season and manager Rik Kiddle is delighted by their success.
He said: “We only put the team together last summer, and we have a tight-knit bunch of lads from the local area who have showed passion and commitment all season.
“There’s talent here too, and I’m delighted the boys have got their reward.”