Wealdstone were controversially denied their first win in the Vanarama Conference South at Privett Park on Saturday. Scott McGleish’s last gasp volley was ruled out by an eagle eyed Assistant Referee who had spotted that defender Jack Mills had a foot over the touch line from his throw in that had created the the goal scoring opportunity. Stones celebrations were frustratingly cut short but they could and should have wrapped up all three points from earlier chances in what in truth had been a tight, sometimes scrappy game.
Scott McGleish almost opened his account early doors when his instant strike looped over stranded home keeper Nathan Ashmore, smashed the crossbar and was eventually cleared from danger. Stones were largely controlling play, as Gosport struggled to get a real foothold on the game. Against the run of play, however, Gosport did have a chance to take the lead through Dan Wooden. A long-ball forward from Sam Pearce was latched onto by Wooden, whose goal-bound strike was superbly blocked by the impressive Tom Hamblin.
Gosport began to cause the Wealdstone back four problems with both Tom Dunford and Steve Ramsey testing Jonathan North, but the Stones keeper was untroubled. The game became very much a midfield battle but Matt Paterson for the home side did force an impressive save from North following some neat footwork inside the area. On the stroke of half-time, Borough again went close. A cross from deep by Dunford was met by Paterson’s head who could only guide the ball just wide of the up-right.
Wealdstone looked brighter again after the restart. An in-swinging Tom Hickey cross sat up nicely for Johnny Wright whose overhead kick was held onto well by Ashmore. Paterson continued to cause Wealdstone’s defence some problems and his ambitious 25-yard strike looked to have given Gosport the lead, but for the ball to hit the side netting. Stones sensed that they could make the breakthrough and McGleish’s ambitious effort from 30-yards brought a good save from Ashmore.
Wealdstone brought on their full allocation of subs with 15 minute remaining and this certainly livened up their attacking threat. Tom Hickey clipped the outside of Ashmore’s post after his first-time effort, following some incisive wing-play from Toby Little, evaded a host of Gosport defenders and left the ‘keeper rooted to the spot. But the best chance of the game so far fell to sub Tom Collins who cut into space on the left but with only the keeper to beat the tall striker clipped the ball wide of the target.
Stones continued to push forward aided by the energy of substitute Joe Turner and they thought they had found the winner in the last seconds of added time only for the Assistants flag to dampen the celebrations.
Wealdstone: North, Mills, Little, Hamblin, Cronin, Martin, Wright, Pigden, McGleish, Hickey, Malcolm. Subs used: Godfrey, Collins, Turner.
Not used: Parker, McCluskey
By Nick DuGard
Steve Foster pics HERE
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