Match report posted by Richard (view the full thread on the forum )
I think most Town fans leaving Whaddon Road yesterday will have come away slightly disappointed that Swindon had earned just one point, instead of the three points that had seemed within their grasp for most of the ninety minutes. Though the Town didn`t dominate, the defensive display kept Cheltenham well contained, and for some better finishing and a worse goalkeeper, we could have won by two or three. The match stats say it all - STFC had 21 shots (with 12 on target) to CTFC`s 11 - and Cheltenham`s keeper was awarded the MOTM award.
The first half was a reasonably even affair - perhaps even shaded by Cheltenham in terms of territory, but they were completely unable to break the Town`s back four down, and Swindon themselves looked threatening on the break at times, exactly as you would expect in an away performance. Unfortunately though, the most notable performance in the first half came from the referee. Mr Stroud spent the first thirty minutes as a complete homer, giving the Town absolutely nothing - then, maybe after realising that he would get more stick from the 1,800 noisy Swindon fans than the silent home support, he seemed to switch his allegiance, marking his decision by booking Cheltenham striker Myrie-Williams for diving, after he went under following a challenge by Ifil in the area. In truth, it looked to me like far more of a close call - but Myrie-Williams perhaps paid the penalty for going down softly just minutes earlier.
Cheltenham were restricted to one or two long range efforts that troubled Smith in goal, and a good header which was well blocked by Jack Smith, but the best chances both fell to Blair Sturrock. The first resulted in the opening goal, which for some reason was disputed by the Cheltenham defenders. It came after Zaaboub intercepted a clearance, and stood a cross up to the far post - Sturrock rose above the defender and headed the Town into the lead. Minutes later, a low shot from Sturrock was well parried by the keeper, and the ball was cleared before Zaaboub could get to it.
In the second half, it seemed like it would be only time before Swindon added to their lead. Roberts ran through a number of players before going to ground amid hopeful penalty claims, and another effort from Peacock saw the ball run loose - Roberts being ridiculously booked when going for the loose ball.
At the back, the Town looked solid - and it was only going to take a setpiece, fluke or a wonder strike to get Cheltenham on level terms. Unfortunately, they got the latter. A ball forward was poorly headed away to the edge of the area - not sure who by, but they really shouldn`t have done it - and it was picked up by substitute Vincent about 25 yards out. With no-one near him, he let fly, and the ball flew into the top corner of the net. It was a great goal, but preventable, and disappointing to concede.
The goal woke the Cheltenham fans from their slumber - they had been so quiet all game long - and the team responded, Myrie-Williams was causing grief with his runs from deep, and the other substitute Spencer was a threat in the air. For a few minutes, it looked like we could lose it - Cheltenham were winning corners, and Smith had to make a couple of saves. That said, there were no clear-cut chances, and it wasn`t long before Swindon were back in the ascendancy, and had five decent efforts - and two of which really should have won us back the lead. The first fell to Miguel Comminges, who had just replaced Roberts - a ball came in from the left, and found him in behind the defence, just six yards out. He connected well, but somehow the Cheltenham keeper managed to get a hand to it and turn it over - a complete reaction save. The second fell to Sturrock, who met a Zaaboub cross with his head, but couldn`t direct it goalwards when it looked like he should have done better. Further efforts followed - again from Sturrock, who shot over, Comminges who sent a rasping twenty yard drive that was saved, and Crai