Harrow Borough 0- 3 Wealdstone
0 - 3
Harrow Borough’s conscientious manager David Howell must be wondering what he has done to deserve the now regular thrashings meted out by Wealdstone in these derby matches. On Easter Monday at Earlsmead Stones didn’t quite achieve the heights of last December’s 6-0 annihilation but the result was all the more satisfying for the massed ranks of away supporters as Boro’ had approached this game on the back of a fine run of league form; Wealdstone of course simply had to win to maintain any flickering hopes of a play off position and this ultimately was the prize they sought.
In the event a feisty hat trick from a pumped up Greg Ngoyi and the sending off of Boro’s skipper Wayne Walters early in the second half wiped away any real fight from the Reds and it become all too easy for a rampant Stones side that had already started to think about next Saturdays massive game at Champions Dover.
This vital win holds Stones in sixth position, one league placing outside of the play off zone; two wins are needed and other results to go in their favour but the top five flame still flickers.
Skipper James Gray was back from suspension and was preferred up front to Davis Haule who was on the bench; Stones other change was to start Danny Spendlove ahead of David Hicks.
Both sides spent the opening minutes sparring with each other in a midfield tussle but with Stones losing out in the free kick stakes as physical prowess won over quality of football. But it soon became clear that James Gray’s muscular presence and aggression up front had the capacity to unsettle a rather lumbering looking Boro back line. Ryan Ashe entered Referee Mr Lewis’s notebook as early as 12 minutes for a clumsy challenge as Stones gained their first corner that came to nought.
Then after only 16 minutes the first of several misfortunes for Harrow occurred as veteran keeper Richard Wilmot pulled his hamstring belting a clearance. The doyen of the away support, Andray Baptiste, plugged the gap.
Boro then had their best spell of the match with Jonathan Constant living up to his reputation as he made some good penetrating runs down the flanks. He was unlucky when he got free of Lee Chappell near the right corner flag, turned and saw Sean Thomas make a great near post save from his goal bound strike. But Greg Ngoyi was then equally unfortunate with a sharp shot from Danny Spendlove’s cross.
Stones aggression and pressing in the midfield and discipline at the back gradually began to see them gain the ascendancy but still with few efforts on Baptiste’s goal to show for it.
But that all changed in the space of two minutes as an exuberant Greg Ngoyi pounced. On 38 minutes Stones attacked fluently as Lee Chappell crossed perfectly for Ryan Ashe to power in a shot straight at Baptiste who could only parry. The ball pinged out to the on rushing Greg Ngoyi who lashed the ball in. One minute later and it was 2-0. The blues attacked straight from the restart and a corner ball was gained on the left which Ryan Ashe floated in. In a sweet movement Ngoyi got ahead of his marker and expertly flicked past a helpless Baptiste for a clinical finish.
Tempers frayed as Stones pressed forward for a third before the break – Lee Chappell hurdled a scything challenge from Kwasi Frempong but the two players caught up and clashed and both were booked. The Stones players were cheered off by their 350 strong supporters as the half concluded.
Boro’ manager David Howell must have had kittens as seconds after the turnaround his game plan was thrown into complete disarray. James Gray danced into the Boro’ box and was positioning himself to shoot when he was clattered for an easy penalty decision. Up strode Greg Ngoyi who swept past the befuddled Baptiste for 3-0 and effectively game over barely a minute into the second period.
Wealdstone were now able to play the ball on the ground and cut out the aerial tennis of the first half and strolled through the next 44 minutes. The away side’s cause was aided by the dismissal of Harrow skipper Wayne Walters for a silly challenge and then, inexplicably, their most effective forward, Jonathan Constant was substituted for Jerome Hall. The recently lauded Gary Noel was virtually anonymous for the home side.
The half wore on with Stones having almost too much time and space as play opened out and chances to increase the lead came and went, with all subs used. But the match was already won and it’s next stop Dover.
Wealdstone: Thomas, McCoy, Chappell, Locke, Martin, Ashe, Forbes, O’Leary, Gray, Ngoyi, Spendlove. Subs used: Hicks, Alexander, Jones. N/u: Haule, Woods.