WINGATEWEBWingate & Finchley clawed back a result from the jaws of defeat as they came back from 2-0 down to gain a point at home to Hampton & Richmond Borough, writes Nikhil Saglani

Ryman League Premier Division:
Wingate & Finchley 2 Hampton & Richmond 2
Saturday, 29 November, 2014

TABLE
FIXTURES & RESULTS

The game began evenly until a headed clearance from the hosts fell to Jake Rose, whose shot from 30 yards flew past Bobby Smith and gave the visitors the lead on seven minutes.

The Wingate goalkeeper continued his good run of form despite the goal, rushing off his line to clean up through balls played behind his defence. He prevented Ben Harris from doubling the lead two minutes after the opener and also saved well on 19 minutes from a long-range attempt from Nicholas Bignall.

However, on 27 minutes Thomas Collins was played in behind the hosts’ defence and finished well across Smith to double the visitors’ advantage – a goal duly celebrated by the visiting fans. Hampton had the chance to go three goals ahead – effectively putting the game to bed – but Collins’ cross was put just wide by Bignall. The hosts had the chance to pull a goal back, but Rob Laney headed Marc Weatherstone’s excellent cross over the crossbar.

The home side responded well after the break and Paul Wright’s long ball was chested down by Laney, who squared to Ifeanyi Alenn – but his shot sailed high and wide. Twelve minutes into the second half, the home side pulled a goal back when David Knight’s free-kick missed everyone in the box and nestled into the bottom corner.

The hosts began to push forward and put Hampton under heavy pressure, but could not find the equaliser. Knight was played in on the hour mark but put his chance wide of the far post. The visitors had the chance to make it 3-1 when a curled free-kick was headed wide by Kieran Murphey. They had yet another chance on 78 minutes after a long-range effort from goalscorer Rose was saved by a diving Bobby Smith, and Collins somehow managed to put his rebound wide from six yards.

The equaliser came in the 84th minute; Ahmet Rifat slipped a through ball between the Hampton centre-backs and Rob Laney rounded the keeper. The on-rushing Smith made contact with Laney, who bundled over and a penalty was given – much to the anger of the visiting faithful. Knight tucked the penalty home, sending the keeper the wrong way and the home fans into ecstasy. Knight had the chance to complete the turn around in the 91st minute but sent his free-kick handsomely wide of the post.

A Wingate comeback resulted in both sides sharing the spoils in a game of two halves.

Line-Ups:
Wingate & Finchley: Smith, Weatherstone, Kaloczi, Rifat, Wright, Tejan-Sie, Lake (Sogbanmu 65), Graham, Allen (Goodman 87), Knight, Laney. Subs: Udoh, Nielsen, Joseph.

Hampton & Richmond Borough: Smith, Williams, Wells, Morrison, Murphey, Osman, Nkumu (Roberts 88), Rose (Sankoh 65), Harris (Wanadio 63), Bignall, Collins.

Goalscorers:
Wingate & Finchley – Knight (57, 84)
Hampton & Richmond: Rose (7), Collins (27)

Attendance:
118

Referee:
Matt Eva