REPORT | Wealdstone 1-1 Boreham Wood
Ten-man Wealdstone held firm in front of the TNT Sports cameras to share the spoils with local rivals Boreham Wood in the day’s late kick-off, at the Vale.
Manager Stuart Maynard made three changes team that were edged out of the FA Cup last week by Bromley, with Jack Cook, Nathan Ferguson and Abdul Abdulmalik returned to the starting line-up for the Stones.
Luke Garrard’s side took an early lead through Erico Sousa, but Maynard’s men drew level just before half-time with an excellent solo goal from man-of-the-match Tarryn Allarakhia.
Boreham Wood started the match with intensity and broke the deadlock in style within 18 minutes when Angelo Balata switched play to the dangerous Sousa on the left wing, who drove at Mason Barrett and clinically despatched past Jed Ward into the bottom corner from just inside the area.
Moments later, the visitors nearly doubled their lead as Lee Ndlovu was released through on goal for a one-on-one with Ward, but the Wealdstone shot-stopper produced a vital save to deny the striker.
Wealdstone began to gradually settle into the rhythm of the match and galvanised a chance on the half-hour mark when skipper Cook surged forward from defence and struck a shot from the edge of the box which was saved by Nathan Ashmore.
The Wood came close to notching a second goal in the 33rd minute when Cameron Coxe cut the ball back to Tyrone Marsh who hit an early effort which had to be deflected wide for a corner.
The resultant corner fell to Balanta who hit a sweet strike on frame; however Ward was equal to the effort, reacting with a crucial save.
Three minutes before the interval, the Stones equalised in superb fashion as Allarakhia burst forward on the left wing and weaved his way through the visitors’ defence to powerfully fire across Ashmore into the far corner.
Both sides returned from the break on the front-foot as they looked to seize the initiative in this thrilling encounter.
Bolstered from his goal, Allarakhia was proving to be a constant threat down the left flank, creating chances with his pace and skill.
However, the Stones were reduced to ten-men in the 67th minute when Barrett committed a foul and was shown his second yellow card of the evening.
With their numerical advantage, the Wood began to enjoy a positive spell of possession and attacking endeavour as they went in pursuit of a winner.
Substitute Kyle Smith looked like he had turned provider in the 79th minute when his pinpoint corner found Cook, but the captain could only direct his header just over the crossbar.
The Wood pressed for a winner in the final 10 minutes and goal scorer Sousa nearly bagged his brace with three minutes remaining as his long range effort was on target, but Charlie Barker made an excellent block to preserve the score line.
Two minutes into stoppage time, the visitors had their last bite of the cherry when Matt Robinson and Sousa were both denied in quick succession from close range.
Wealdstone return to action on Tuesday evening when they entertain Oxford City at the Vale in a 7.45pm kick-off.
WEALDSTONE: Ward, Barrett, Barker, Cook (c), Mundle-Smith, Ferguson, Bowen, Kretzschmar (Smith 70), Allarakhia, Abdulmalik (Charles 66), Campbell (Adarkwa 76).
Subs not used: Obiero, Mason.
Attendance: 1,505 (including 73 Boreham Wood fans)
Report by Nicole Cho-Yee