Sunday, June 16, 2024

Football: Even as Stephen penalty earns Rocks a point

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Ryman Premier

East Thurrock United 1 v 1 Enfield Town

EAST THURROCK came back from a goal down to earn a vital point in a 1-1 draw against Enfield Town at Rookery Hill.

It seemed appropriate that the first chance of the game came from a goalmouth scramble as Enfield players pinged the ball around the Rocks area. The ball fell to Mitch Hahn but his shot, deflected by Bertie Brayley was flagged offside.

In the 3rd minute, David Hughes squeezed into space but with just the keeper to beat, his weak shot underlined the lack of confidence the Rocks have been showing all season.

But despite the conditions, the Rocks were determined to play the ball on the deck.

In the 9th minute, Tom Stephen sent over a free kick but it was easily punched out by the Town keeper.

In the 14th minute, Leon McKenzie marauded forward but again, he could not find the killer pass to a Rocks shirt.

A point blank save by Rocks keeper David Hughes kept the game at nil-nil although you did wonder where the first goal was going to come from.

In the 29th minute, Hughes made a wonderful double save, again from close range which showed what a great find the keeper is.

The opening goal in the 42nd minute came out of the blue when the referee judged that an Enfield player was being held down.

Town striker Liam Hope confidently banged the dead ball into the back of the net.

If you were in any doubt the Rocks were in a six-pointer, then the penalty reinforced how important this game was.

Rocks came out in the second half and immediately began to ping first time balls around. But Town also looked like they wanted to face the pace and with Mitch Hahn bossing the midfield it always looked like they could add to their tally.

But before they could do that, the Rocks equalised in the 57th minute after, as in the first half, the ref judged that defender manhandled an attacker in the area. Tom Stephen placed the spot kick home.

The Rocks now had their tails up and produced a wave of attacks as it certainly left for an exciting last fifteen minutes when the game could have gone either way.

Most of the Rocks most potent attacks came from sub Mitch Pinnock who was a real handful. In the 77th minute he produced a great cross that Leon McKenzie got a head to but could not force home.

In the 85th minute, Town forced a corner but a resolute Rocks defence held firm.

Town had another great chance when they showed lovely balance through the heart of the Rocks defence but Hope’s shot went way over the bar.

The final chance of the game saw Pinnock again striding down the left but the pass to the centre was just behind David Bryant.

In an ideal world it may be two points dropped at home but by the end of the season both sides may remember this game.

East Thurrock: Hughes D, Hopkins J, Stephen T, Peddie S, Easterford J, Parmenter R, Sammons R, Symons N, MacKenzie L, Bryant D, Bourne C.

Subs not used: Pinnock M, Anderson T, Dharrial T, Paxman J, Ring J

Enfield Town: Imber N, Griffiths S, Stevens J, White L, Kirby M, Hahn M, Campbell T, Quinton B, Hope L, Brayley B, Whiteley C.

Subs not used: Ewang M, Osei J, Living N, O’Brien J, Elms J

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