Reading 4 Doncaster Belles 0: Kirby hat trick downs Doncaster

Gordon Staniforth. Picture: Kevin Neagle
Gordon Staniforth. Picture: Kevin Neagle
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Doncaster Rovers Belles sunk to their first-ever defeat in FA Women’s Super League 2 after Reading’s Fran Kirby continued to add to her blossoming reputation with a stunning hat-trick.

But it was Doncaster who had the opportunity to go in front in the 22nd minute when Courtney Sweetman-Kirk opted to shoot early and curled her effort wide.

Reading then broke down the left, with Kirby cutting inside before curling the ball over Nicola Hobbs into the top right corner.

Some lackadaisical defending allowed Kirby to score again on the counter-attack, this time with a simple finish from inside the box just before the break.

Doncaster started the second half brightly and Sue Smith came close with a dipping volley that went inches wide.

Kirby was then denied a third goal as Leandra Little produced a fine headed clearance on the line.

But the striker claimed her hat-trick on the hour mark with an excellent lob from the edge of the box over the on-rushing Hobbs.

Nine minutes later Kirby turned provider, squaring the ball to Bonnie Horwood who finished coolly in the left corner.

Belles came close to a consolation, but Horwood was on hand to block Jess Sigsworth’s volley in the box.

* The FA Women’s Super League has been newly expanded to two leagues for 2014. To watch all 18 clubs live in action buy tickets here:

Reading Women (4-5-1): Davies; Jane, Bartrip, McGee, Cox; Bruton, Horwood, Bragg, Roche, Scott; Kirby (Williams 83)

Subs not used: Moloney, Giddings, Nicol, Fletcher, Haines, Goddard

Bookings: None

Red cards: None

Doncaster Rovers Belles (4-3-3): Hobbs; Cunningham, Little, Roberts, Cresswell (Bright 37); England (Mills 65), Williams, Lipka (Thomas 77); Sigsworth, Smith, Sweetman-Kirk

Subs not used: Johnson, Govier

Bookings: Little 14

Red cards: None

Att: 246

Referee: M Taylor