Ryman Division One North
Ware 1 v 2 Grays Ath
GRAYS ATH made it four wins out of four with a hard-fought away win against basement side Ware.
Grays started briskly with a new formation due to suspensions. In the 2nd minute, Danny Bunce found himself in a forward position but his shot was off-target.
Ware under the stewardship of ex-Spur Stuart Nethercott looked dangerous on the break.
Nathan Gordon looked lively and he also had a shot, inside the area, which went just over the bar. The player has been a boon for Grays since signing last month. What he is able to do is run the flank but also get into the box at nearly every opportunity.
Bunce was working a shift in midfield but lacked the distribution of the suspended Harry Agombar.
The game had potential banana-skin written all over it and sure enough, Ware opened the scoring in the 20th minute when good work down the right saw a cross go in and the hapless Grant Cooper turned it into his own net.
Grays lacked any real shape in the middle of the park and there distribution was awful.However, they are durable team.
In the 33rd minute, Joao Carlos drove through to the edge of the area and was fouled. Lee Flynn drove the free kick forward and it was deflected in for the equaliser.
Grays now looked far more assertive and shots by Jake Hall and Nathan Gordon again created further pressure. Things were not so certain at the back and there were far too many “Garryowens” for comfort.
Matters were even in the early exchanges of the second half. You did wonder how Ware have ended up at the bottom of the division. Then again turning out with one sub might provide a clue!
Nathan Gordon moved into a more central attacking role as a player brimming with confidence went looking for a winner
In the 54th minute, Grant Cooper drove through a free kick into the heart of the area, James Bunn, as he does so well, shielded it and slipped it to Jake Hall, who fired the ball high into the net for his first goal for the Blues.
Grays pressed for the third goal. Again much of the movement came from the flanks.
In the 68th minute, Danny Bunce fired a free kick against the bar as the Blues stepped up the pressure. Grays put in some fine crosses and Nathan Gordon should have done much better with a free header in the 74th minute.
But there was still danger and Tony Tucker did well to turn away a dipping cross for a corner. And he did the same again in fantastic fashion in the 86th minute as Grays looked to hang on to the win.
Things got a little bit-heated towards the end. Kenny Beaney was sent off but Grays Ath managed to keep the lead and kept themselves in the promotion shake-up.
Grays Ath: Tucker T, Ikemulu S, Thomas B, Cooper G, Flynn L, Bunce D, Beaney K, Carlos J, Hall J, Bunn J, Gordon N
Subs not used: Fontaine J, Sweeney J, Sigere J-M, Bryan C, Smallwood J
Ware: Madden, L Rispoli, Bastian, Akande, Querry, Gill, Johnson, Blessing, King, Shiels (Elliott 81), Richards
Subs not used: Nethercott, Adeoye, Bostock.