Match Report by Nick DuGard: Saturday, 16 April 2016: National League South: Wealdstone 0 Maidenhead United 0
Wealdstone proudly introduced the Amateur Cup winning side of 1966 to the 800 strong crowd before the match, this being the 50th anniversary season of that memorable triumph at Wembley. A special celebratory lunch had also been held prior to the match
There were no such heights of glory for Stones in this rather tame encounter but it was memorable for the brilliant performance of keeper Jonathan North who, now back to his cat like best, brought off four outstanding saves. And the resulting point for the home side has now all but made their season safe but in the process has probably killed off Maidenhead’s chances of making the play-offs.
The first half took a while to get going and when it did United’s Dave Tarpey had a half chance on goal but shot wide. Stones did break free on a few occasions through the efforts of Bradley Hudson-Odoi although the wide man was clearly still struggling to get back to his best following his recent injury.
Stones were defending well however and were able to restrict and hamper the Magpies and forcing them into errors and their attacks continually broke down, despite greater possession. When the away side did get into good positions there was little or no end product – and then North intervened superbly in both halves of play.
A highly controversial incident late in the first period could have changed the whole course of the game
Just when Wealdstone appeared to have got free, and with Hudson-Odoi at the point of pulling the trigger clear on goal the referee inexplicably called play back. Both sets of players and crowd were mystified in equal measure as play was held up for several minutes whilst the officials sorted themselves out – the result being a couple of bookings apparently for an incident off the ball that the assistant saw. As matters transpired that was Stones best chance and it came and went in that bizarre moment.
The second period became more open with both sides valiantly attempting to break down stubborn defences.
Subs on either side had impact – former Stone Keiron Forbes for Magpies and Nathan Mavila for Stones. As the contest progressed it was the away side that looked the more likely to get the win but Stones held on for a vital point.
Wealdstone:North, Urquhart, Binns, Parker, Hamblin (Mavila 45), Godfrey, Wright, Cadmore, Louis (Demetriou 84), Davies, Hudson-Odoi (Lucien 79)
Subs not used: Smith, Kalenga
MoM: Jonathan North