Tonbridge Angels 2-0 Wealdstone
2 - 0
Wealdstone’s 12 match unbeaten run came to an abrupt halt on Saturday, as they were beaten at promotion chasing Tonbridge Angels. The defeat now makes Stones already difficult task of reaching the playoffs even more gigantean, and surely even the most optimistic amongst Stones faithful must now concede that a top five finish is looking increasingly in the realms of the miraculous.
After a disappointing first half in this encounter in which they found themselves going in a goal down at half time, Stones improved after the break and saw far more possession but were unable to penetrate a well organised Angel’s side, who made the points safe with their second of the afternoon on 80 minutes, killing the game as a real contest.
In front of a decent sized 505 crowd, which was more than likely affected by England v Wales game kicking off at the same time, Angel’s started the quicker of the two sides with both Frannie Collin and Jake Beercroft both firing straight at Jonathan North in the opening ten minutes, before Alex Dyer had the first chance for the home side, seeing his volley easily saved by Lee Worgan.
Ade Olorunda then had a decent chance for the home side, jinking into the box before getting his shot away which North could only palm into the path of Collins, however luckily for Stones he could only prod the ball wide from close range.
Olorunda did fare better on the half hour mark though when he gave his side a deserved lead. Chris Piper had managed to get to the byline where he pulled the ball back for the former Hastings striker to finish from close range.
Stones then had their best chance of the match soon after as they looked for an equaliser. Joe Benjamin managed to hook the ball back into the six yard box from the byline, where Danny Spendlove was able to head goalwards; however his effort from point blank range was blocked by Worgan.
Wealdstone had offered little attacking threat in the first half, which is perhaps why Gordon Bartlett opted to make a change at half time with Callum Martin replacing the ineffective Joe Benjamin.
Stones began the second half much brighter, with Kurtney Brooks going close, seeing his powerful effort from the edge of the box rebound just wide off of Callum Martin.
The visitors were creating a lot more possession than they were in the first half, and Martin was next to go close, showing great skill on the edge of the box before firing a low shot just wide.
Danny Spendlove then had a great chance to pull his side level on 65 minutes, when Peter Dean’s clever flick released the winger whose well struck shot was expertly saved by Worgan.
Angel’s had so far been unable to muster an effort on target in the second half, however this changed on 70 minutes when Scott Kinch hit a superb volley from 30 yards which North tipped round the post.
With the clock running down, Stones had another good chance with 15 minutes left to play, when Lee Chappell rose well to meet Martin’s cross, however his headed effort flew just wide of the post.
Despite Stones having the better of the possession in the second half, Angel’s were able to seal the win with ten minutes to play. Olorunda met a deep cross from Jon Heath with a firm header which crashed off the cross bar onto the path of substitute Carl Rook who had the simple task of nodding in from 6 yards.
The defeat was a bitter blow for Stones, but they must now look to pick themselves up again starting with a Middlesex Charity Cup semi final on Thursday evening at North Greenford, before they entertain Concord Rangers next Saturday at The Vale, 3pm kick off.
Wealdstone: North, Hammond (Locke 73), Chappell (c), Parker, Cronin, Dyer, Marten, Brooks, Benjamin (Martin 46), Dean, Spendlove (Adjei). Subs not used: Thomas, Conteh.
By Stuart Warren