Kidderminster Harriers kept their National League North title hopes alive as they saw off a resilient Gloucester City side.

On a blistering hot day, Gloucester started at a blistering pace. Chris Knowles received the ball in the Harriers penalty area but the scuffed cross was cut out by Keith Lowe.

Joe Ironside beat former Kidderminster goalkeeper Jasbir Singh to the ball after a flat cross from James McQuilkin on the right but luckily for Singh it drifted over.

Lewis Hall looked to capitalise on a defensive mistake as he nabbed possession on halfway and ran in the box before lashing a cross in that nobody could meet.

Kidderminster had the lead in dubious circumstances, though, as Ironside rose over Joe Hanks after a push on the Tigers man, and converted the header from two yards out.

City were back on level terms not too long after, though, and it came after a superb passing move involving all of Gloucester’s forwards.

Ed Williams, Luke Thomas, Zack Kotwica and Hanks intricately combined before Williams struck a stunning effort past the despairing dive of Hornby.

A good forward run by Luke Thomas ended in disappointed as he got into the box but slipped as he crossed and the danger passed.

Ironside was desperately unlucky as he got the run across a sleeping Jack Deaman at the near post and fired a half volley wide.

Chris Knowles looked to power a header goalwards from the edge of the box but the direction was lacking on the effort.

Somehow City didn’t score as the ball was hooked forward and blocked on the line by Hodgkiss, with appeals for handball waved away.

A golden opportunity befell Luke Thomas at the start of the second half as Knowles chipped a delicate ball forward and fired a delicate, tame volley at Hornby.

Kidderminster retook the lead as Avery let the ball float over him but wasn’t aware of Nti lurking behind him, and the forward finished well after seeing off Keiran Thomas.

Luke Thomas looked to get his side back in the game as he took the ball in his stride so well in the penalty area and flashed it across goal but Hodgkiss cleared at the back post with Kotwica arriving.

Keith Lowe, returning to his old stomping ground of Whaddon Road, rattled the crossbar inside 10 yards before firing over a second chance after Tunnicliffe knocked the ball down to him on the edge of the box.

With the Tigers pushing for an equaliser and clearly getting frustrated, Jack Deaman was sent off for what was presumably dissent, as City couldn’t find the breakthrough.

Gloucester City: Singh, K. Thomas, Hall, Deaman, Avery, Knowles (King 78’), Hanks, Webb (capt), Williams, Kotwica, L. Thomas (Hopper 78’)

Subs not used: McGrory, Hamilton, Moseley

Kidderminster Harriers: Hornby, Hodgkiss, Francis-Angol, Lowe (capt), Tunnicliffe, Croasdale, McQuilkin, Knights (Austin 77’), Ironside (T. Williams 88’), Waite (Brown 54’), Nti

Subs not used: Sonupe, Ezewele

Referee: Anthony Tankard

Attendance: 948

Star man: Keiran Thomas

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