Report - Chippenham Town 1 - 1 Wealdstone
Wealdstone had to settle for a point against Chippenham Town at Hardenhuish Park in the National League South on Saturday afternoon.
Michee Efete found a second half equaliser for the league leaders after Scott Twine opened the scoring early in the first half.
Stones Manager Dean Brennan made two changes from the side that beat Dulwich Hamlet last weekend, impact substitutes Sanchez Watt and Ryan Sellers came in for Ross Lafayette and Jake Sheppard.
The league leaders looked to draw first blood in the opening five minutes, Michael Phillips, initially ruled out for this fixture, struck a golden opportunity over the bar.
Wealdstone started strong however, it was the home side who got themselves in-front after 15 minutes. Swindon Town loanee Twine found the net at the back-post and netted his sixth goal in four games.
The Bluebirds came into this fixture in good form, they have won five of their last six games under Mike Cook and were unbeaten at home since the start of February.
Chippenham almost doubled their lead when Luke Haines found Alex Bray at the back-post, before Phillips made a crucial last-ditch challenge to deny the Bluebirds.
Full-back Ryan Sellers’ error allowed Chris Zebroski in on-goal before Captain Jerome Okimo covered and intercepted the Chippenham centre-forward.
That was a big let-off for the Stones and their deficit could have been doubled had it not been for Okimo’s tackle.
Billy Clifford took aim from 25-yards before the interval and was unable to find the target, Moses Emmanuel also saw two shots blocked before the break.
The Stones came out much quicker in the second half and rapidly found an equaliser, Efete forced Will Puddy to push his effort onto the post before he stopped Sanchez Watt’s follow-up effort.
Efete’s goalscoring form was not stopped soon after, as he found his second goal in as many games and his seventh goal of the season from full-back when he slotted under Puddy seven minutes into the second period.
It was almost the one-two for the Stones in similar fashion to last week’s turnaround against Dulwich Hamlet, Watt was gifted a fantastic opportunity in-front of goal to put the Stones ahead but former Stone Rhys Tyler made a miraculous recovery to block Watt’s effort on the line.
The Stones remained on top and were clinical when Moses Emmanuel scored from Ashley Charles’ quick free kick before the goal was ruled off for offside on the hour-mark.
Wealdstone kept the pressure coming, Clifford’s free kick was parried away by Puddy as the league leaders looked to find a winner.
The big chances began to fall for Chippenham in the final 10 minutes, their first late opportunity fell to Kieran Parselle as he miraculously missed the target from the six-yard box.
Stones goalkeeper Aston Oxborough was called into action moments after when he had to catch George Rigg’s acrobatic effort on goal.
The Stones dominated possession in stoppage time as neither team could find a late winner, Wealdstone remain three points clear at the National League South summit with a game in-hand.
Report by Dec O’Reilly
Wealdstone: Oxborough, Efete, Sellers (Sheppard, 35), Phillips, Okimo, Clifford (Krasniqi, 80), Charles, Watt, Green, Lewis, Emmanuel.
Subs not used: Ringer, McCoy, McLennan.
Chippenham Town: Puddy, Tyler, Foulston, Russe, Parselle, McDonald, Rigg, Haines (Case, 70), Zebroski, Twine, Bray (Pratt, 85).