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Wokingham Wanderers F.C.
Bracknell Strikers Res. 4 Wanderers 0
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8th February 2004 - Division 3 - Calfridus Way, Bracknell.

Wanderers faced Bracknell Strikers Reserves for the second successive week, desperate for a positive performance and result to end their dismal run.

 

Clint Falcus was ruled out through injury, so Jamie Ryall came in at right-back with Chris Hillsdon partnering Dan van der Laan O'Donnell in the centre.

 

Wokingham found themselves up against it from the start as Strikers were relentless in their attacking.  They enjoyed great success in running through the Wanderers' midfield, and only a spirited Wokingham defence helped to keep the game goalless.

 

Midway through the first-half Strikers did take the lead, the Bracknell midfielder scrapping through challenges to beat Mellor with an angled shot which flew in off the crossbar.

 

Wanderers had a few half-chances but could not draw level before the break.  Captain Scott Ford's left-footed shot was saved as it seemed destined for the bottom corner of the goal.  From the resulting corner Ford had another shot blocked and as Prior cross in the rebound, the ball clearly struck the arm of the Strikers defender.  The referee somehow did not see the handball.

 

In the second-half Wokingham were unable to raise their efforts and conceded three more goals.  For a twenty minute period Wanderers completely dropped their heads and were punished.

 

The introduction of substitutes Holland, Townsend and Wakeley saw Wanderers improve slightly.  However a run of seven matches without winning has seen the Blues go from promotion hopefuls to relegation candidates.  Victory against fellow-strugglers Rides United next week is now essential.

 

TEAM: Allan Mellor, Jamie Ryall, Chris Hillsdon, Dan van der Laan O'Donnell, Chris Orbell, Kieron Sherwood, Scott Ford, Lewis Trusty, Anthony Prior, Matthew Elliott, Tom Soane.

SUBS: Owen Holland (for Trusty), Edward Townsend (for Sherwood), Darren Wakeley (for Elliott).