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Crusaders left on the spot at the finish

Late penalty wrecks point chances at Wealdstone

Malcolm Howe

sport@newburynews.co.uk

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Crusaders left on the spot at the finish

Ian Herring - penalised at the end

Wealdstone 1 Hungerford Town 0

HUNGERFORD’S patched-up side finally succumbed to a 92nd minute penalty as former manager Bobby Wilkinson showed that he has imbued his new side with the never-say-die spirit it continued to show on Saturday.

While never a game for the purist, it was hardly expected to be with each campo having a pretty good idea of how the other would operate.

It was won by a disputed penalty when Abo Eisa got the ball down close to the six yard box and dashed between a crowd of players, seemingly going down before Ian Herring’s challenge form the wrong side of the player.

Referee Jacob Miles had earlier booked Eisa for diving, but this was a tighter call and the Wealdstone danger man got the call and tucked the penalty past Marcus Beauchamp.

Beauchamp was playing is first league game for Hungerford, who also had Barnet loanee Darnelll Smith at the heart of their defence and only four players on the bench.

It was a game of few clear-cut chances with Hungerford employing a back five and Eisa went closest for the home side and Nicholas Bignall for the visitors in the first half, and the pattern continued after the break with Crusaders remaining solid as they frustrated the home side.

Beauchamp saved well from a Ryan Sellers free kick and Anton Rodgers went close for Hungerford with Paul Stonehouse’s drive forcing Jonathan North to save.

But Eisa got the nod to win it and ensure that his – and his opponents’ former – manager did not suffer the ‘curse’ of the manager of the mon the winner.

Hungerford now have to do some more patching up in advance of Tuesday night’s Berks and Bucks Senior Cup tie with Hellenic League Bracknell Town at Bulpit Lane.

Wealdstone: North; Oshodi, Sellers; Olomowewe, Day, Cox; Williams (Hippolyte-Patrick 65), Okimo, Okojie (Fitchett 65), Green (Goodger 65), Eisa.

Hungerford Town: Beauchamp; Clark, Tyler, Herring, Smith, Soares; Soares, Rodgers (Whittingham 83), Stonehouse; Bignall (Lawrence 81), Wall (Hopper 62). Sub: Thomas. 

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