Wednesday, May 29, 2024

Football: Three sent off as Tilbury still so close to title

Essex Senior League

Tilbury 2 v 3 Woodford Town

THE benefit of Tilbury’s sensational run of unbeaten results earlier in the season is now being shown as Dockers move to close out the Essex Senior League title.

Despite defeat in a remarkable, incident-packed match at Chadfields against second-placed Woodford, the borough side retain a ten point lead and another win from their final three matches will mean only Romford could deny them the title.

Dockers’ Essex rivals who play at East Thurrock have three matches in hand but may be distracted after winning through to the FA Vase final after a 10-9 penalty shoot-out success against Lincoln United, drawing the second away leg of the semi-final 0-0 following on from the 2-2 draw at Rookery Hill.

Romford may face another Essex Senior side, Great Wakering Rovers, in the final after they only lost 1-0 in the first leg of their semi at Worcester City (in front of a crowd of 3,79). Rovers will be hopeful of turning the deficit around in next weekend’s second leg.

But Tilbury had their own quest for glory to think about on Saturday, though it turned into something of a nightmare, with three players getting red cards!

Connor Martin was the first to go, given his marching orders for a challenge on the edge of the area early in the match and captain, Oli Spooner followed him to the sidelines, given a 10-minute sin bin for bouncing the ball in dissent.

Despite having the wind behind them and a two man advantage for part of the half Woodford couldn’t take the lead and the sides went into the break goalless.

On the resumption it was Tilbury who broke the deadlock when Spooner slammed home a fine strike from distance. 

A period of Tilbury dominance followed and it was a surprise the hosts only added a solitary further goal which came when Macauley Joynes’ corner was nodded down by Jack McQueen and forced home from close range by Sam Carter.

Tilbury looked home and hosed and a step closer to the title but calamity ensured in the final 20 minutes.

Jack Hayes saw red when he was adjudged to have handled the ball on the line and Town netted the ensuing penalty. 

With a two man advantage Woodford were in the ascendancy and drew level when former Docker Eli Benoit headed home.

With ten minutes left Town were controversially awarded a penalty for a foul conceded by Callum Ibe, though it looked outside to most observers.

Harry Girling denied penalty taker Sollosi at the first attempt but was unlucky as the ball broke for the Woodford man to score at the second attempt.

In the melee of protest after the goal Ibe was sent off and there was no way back for the eight Tilbury men. 

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