Ryman League Division One North
Witham Town 2 v 2 Thurrock
Bill Robinson reports from The Glass Village Stadium…..
THURROCK held on for a valuable point thanks to two penalties scored by Ben Smith, both in the closing minutes of each half.
The first half was very fragmented neither team settling into a pattern of play, but both teams did create half chances which kept both keepers on their toes.
With only seconds remaining in the first half of normal play the ball was sent forward for Joel Nouble to run onto, as he turned his defender he was tripped by the defender and the referee awarded a dubious penalty.
Ben Smith placed the ball on the spot before blasting the ball into the roof of the net.
Half Time 0-1
Witham Town came out for the second half fired up and looking far more compact and composed and with the wind at their backs they pushed Thurrock deep into their own half.
With 49 minutes gone the ball was cleared out of defence but only as far as James Stevens who drove the ball straightn back and into the top corner of the net giving keeper Reece Ottley no chance.
The goal spurred the home side on and although the football was long ball up and down it was a cross from the left that caught out the Thurrock defence and saw the home side in front.
The move started on the left flank, as the ball was put across it was headed on from the near post, to the back post where Seb Murfit was unmarked to head home from close range.
With time running out the game saw some hard fought tackling between the sides and a number of bookings followed.
Once again with less than a minute remaining Thurrock took a short corner, the ball was sent deep into the Witham box as the ball blasted between the players it hit a defenders arm standing on the goal line giving the referee no option but to award a penalty and send him from the field.
Ben Smith repeated his previous penalty blasting the ball into the top of the net saving the the day for Thurrock and earning them a valuable point.
Team: Reece Ottley, Anton Blackmead, Mark Onyaman, Daniel Rumen, Robert Gilman, Ben Smith, Lewis Perkins, Lenny Spence, John Nouble, Charlie Stimpson, Bradley Warner.