Harrow Borough 2 – 4 Wealdstone

HarrowHarrow Borough
Ryman League Premier Division

2 - 4

WealdstoneWealdstone
KO: 19:45 | Tue 1st Mar ’11

Wealdstone came out on top in the first Harrow derby of the season as they overcame neighbours Harrow Borough 4-2 in an absorbing game on Tuesday night. More importantly it extends their unbeaten run to 8 games and see’s them keep their slim playoff hopes alive.

Peter Dean was the hero for Stones, scoring two and claiming an assist for another. Dean could even have walked away with the match ball under his arm had his 49th minute penalty not been saved by Harrow ‘keeper Nick Jupp.

Before kick off the big team news was that striker Callum Martin was making his first start in almost a year, partnering Dean upfront as Wealdstone look to prove there is life after Richard Jolly.

After a scrappy opening 15 minutes on a difficult pitch in which neither side seemed able to get their foot on the ball, it was Martin who created the first opening, showing a great first touch before threading the ball through to Danny Spendlove. It looked like the pass had been over hit but Spendlove was just able to keep the ball in, pulling it back to Dean whose diving header was saved at point blank range by Jupp.

Stones did take the lead seven minutes later though when Harrow’s Kwasi Frempong slipped in the box when trying to clear the ball and in the ensuing scramble the midfielder was adjudged to have pulled a Wealdstone player back, resulting in a penalty. Peter Dean stepped up to calmly slot home the penalty for his 18th goal of the season.

The goal appeared to give Stones confidence, and Sean Cronin nearly doubled the advantage on the half hour mark, seeing his left footed shot across goal just clear the far post.

The home side then pulled the game level on 40 minutes, somewhat against the run of play. Rocky Baptiste laid the ball to Dewayne Clarke whose low drive from the edge of the box took a wicked deflection off Cronin and spun into the net.

Harrow were level for just four minutes though. Wealdstone hit Boro on the break, with Martin finding Dean with a clever ball. Dean was able to back heel the ball first time into the path of the onrushing Lee Chappell, who showed great composure before finishing powerfully past Jupp to ensure Stones went in 2-1 up at the break.

The second half began in frantic fashion, when just two minutes in Callum Martin had the ball in the net, only for his effort to be ruled out for offside.

There was more drama to follow almost straight after though. Martin’s ball to the back post deceived Jupp leaving Chappell with an open goal, but as the Wealdstone skipper looked like he was about to put the ball into net he was tugged back by Harrow’s Danny Leech. The referee signalled for a penalty, and also sent the defender off leaving Borough with the daunting task of playing out the remaining 40 minutes with 10 men. From the spot kick Dean saw his effort saved by the legs of Jupp, however Alex Dyer was able to slot home the rebound with ease to put his side two goals to the good.

Borough now looked shell shocked, and Stones were cutting through them with ease, with Spendlove seeing his effort well saved by Jupp, before Chappell saw his free kick well saved by the Harrow ‘keeper.

Jonathan North was called into action for the first time in the half on 65 minutes, saving well at the feet of Kurt Morlese as he bore down on goal

With the visitors now dominating possession, Borough found an unlikely route back into the game on 74 minutes. Kenta Nakashima hit a high free kick into the box, which seemed to deceive North and resulted in him spilling the ball over the line.

The goal appeared to give Harrow a massive lift, and they were now seeing a lot more of the ball as they looked to pull the game level, however they were unable to create any clear cut chances as Stones worked hard to see the game out.

It was in the last minute of time added on that Stones finally made the game safe. Substitutes Joe Benjamin and Jerome Frederico combined after a quick counter attack, the latter sent a great ball to the far post which Dean was able to side foot home for his second of the night, to ensure the noisy Stones following were sent home happy.

Wealdstone now turn their attentions to Saturday’s home game with league leaders Sutton United, 3pm kick off.

Attendance: 337

Wealdstone: North, Hammond (Frederico 77), Massey, Parker, Cronin, Dyer, Spendlove (Conteh 83), Brooks, Martin, Dean, Chappell (c). Sub not used: Thomas

By Stuart Warren