Sunday, 21 April 2019

10-man Woodcote/Stoke Row take share of spoils

10-man Woodcote/Stoke Row take share of spoils

VISITING side WOODCOTE/STOKE ROW picked up a point in their Premier Division top-of-the-table clash with MARLOW UNITED at the Alfred Davis Memorial Ground last Saturday in a match played out in front of a crowd of more than 150 spectators.

Although ending in a stalemate the match wasn’t lacking for action as a full blooded feisty encounter ensued.

Player-manager Sam Tucker fielded two debutants for the visitors in his starting 11 with striker Jermaine Gumbs and young goalkeeper Josh Scurr putting in an assured performance between the sticks.

The game began at a fast pace and it was Woodcote who almost opened the scoring when a whipped ball in from the left by Frank Dillon was met at the back post by Ryan Corbett. Although only six yards out the winger wasn’t quite able to get his head over the rising ball and his header went just over the bar.

After this Marlow had a couple of chances of their own, finding some joy down their left hand side where a combination of blocking and a snatch finish resulted in Woodcote being able to clear their lines.

On the half hour mark Woodcote/Stoke Row striker Ed Gadd, who was employed in a central midfield position, was given a straight red card for a reckless challenge on Marlow’s Adam Harman on the edge of the Woodcote penalty area.

Now down to 10 men and with more than an hour left to play the Woodcote team pulled together and saw the rest of the half out to maintain a 0-0 scoreline at half time.

In the second half Woodcote/Stoke Row put in one of their best ever defensive team displays. Dropping deep into their own half the visitors held two solid banks of four and despite attack after attack from Marlow, limited the home team to one or two chances for the whole of the second period.

Led by the centre half pairing of Donal Roughneen and Sam Green and tireless efforts of central midfield duo Sam Tucker and Andy Bullett the 10 men of Woodcote remained disciplined, holding off Marlow until the 75th minute when substitute Nile O’Meally was played in and saw his shot from inside the area cannon off the near post.

Marlow’s best chance fell in injury time as Lorenzo Medford received a through ball and was hauled down by Roughneen inside the six yard box to which the referee pointed immediately to the spot. A melee followed with sets of players from both teams getting involved. After a break in the game of around five minutes, penalty taker Chris Hurst stepped up only to see his spot kick tipped onto the post by Scurr and eventually out for a goal kick.

Having played 12 minutes of injury time the referee eventually blew the final whistle as the match ended goalless.

In Division 1 ROTHERFIELD UNITED secured all three points as they defeated FINCHAMPSTEAD 2-1 at Bishopswood. Jack Woodley and Karl Clark were on target for the hosts.

WOODCOTE/STOKE ROW RESERVES saw their Division 2 promotion hopes take a knock as they suffered a heavy 7-1 defeat at home to MAIDENHEAD TOWN RESERVES. Justin Trow scored the home side’s only goal of the match.

GORING UNITED moved out of the relegation zone thanks to a 2-1 home win against RICHINGS PARK RESERVES. Ed Ardill and Daniel Houseman were the scorers for the home side.

In Division 3 HENLEY TOWN went down to a 2-1 home defeat against PANGBOURNE.

An even start to the match saw both teams creating chances. Henley took the lead on 20 minutes when Nick Holzer fired home a free-kick from outside the box into the top right corner.

Pangbourne equalised soon after when their striker fired his low shot into the bottom left of the Henley goal to make it 1-1.

The visitors took the lead just before half time when a ball over the top found a Pangbourne player who fired home past the Henley keeper.

In the second half neither side created any clear cut chances as the visitors held on to secure all three points.

HAMBLEDEN’S match with visitors BERKS COUNTY SPORTS was abandoned after home goalkeeper Dan James collided with a post whilst making a save and knocked himself unconscious. James was taken to hospital by ambulance where it was revealed he had suffered a double fracture to his shoulder and bruising to his neck and back.

HENLEY TOWN DEVELOPMENT slipped to the foot of the Division 4 table after going down to a 4-2 defeat at WESTWOOD UNITED DEVELOPMENT.

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