Boreham Wood 1 – 1 Altrincham
Saturday 27th August 2022
LV Bet Stadium Meadow Park, Vanarama National League
Wood held to a stalemate with Altrincham
The Wood were unable to make it two wins in a row as goals either side of half time from Aaron Bennett and Lee Ndlovu secured a 1-1 draw with Altrincham.
Bennett broke the deadlock on the stroke of half time when he weaved in and out of the Wood defence before toe-poking the ball past Nathan Ashmore to give Altrincham a late lead, sending the Wood into the break disappointed after being the better of the two sides in the first half. The Robins only had the interval to enjoy their advantage though, as the Wood levelled almost immediately when Ndlovu met a corner at the back post to tap home.
A single change saw Dion Kelly-Evans return from suspension to replace Dennon Lewis on the right flank, and his impact was evident as the Wood looked threatening in wide areas during the opening stages.
The hosts dominated possession throughout the first half but were unable to create a meaningful opportunity, with the first real chances of the game falling to Ryan Colclough. Bennett bundled Zak Brunt off the ball and sent the winger down the left, but Will Evans got his body in the way of his shot. He would go close again moments later but was unable to keep his effort from a free kick down.
Altrincham were looking positive, but the Wood will have been disappointed to not take the lead when Kelly-Evans put the ball into the danger area, however they were unable to scramble it home as Brunt, Jack Payne and Erico Sousa all looked to force the ball over the line before it rolled out for a goal kick.
Tyrone Marsh would then see a couple of chances fly over the crossbar, first with an overhead kick as he looked to divert Lee Ndlovu’s centre past Ollie Byrne before sending Kelly-Evans’ pull-back into the heavens moments later, although the referee did point for a corner.
The ball would find itself in the trees behind the goal for a third time as Ndlovu looked to beat Byrne, but after beating his man with a good turn he slipped as he pulled the trigger and sent his effort from distance well over the crossbar.
Chances continued to dry up as the half progressed and the two sides will have thought they were set to go into the interval goalless. However, the Robins would take the lead against the run of play with little time remaining of the first half, as Bennett’s solo run ended with him rolling the ball over the line deep into stoppage time to send Altrincham into the break ahead.
HT: Boreham Wood 0-1 Altrincham
The Wood got off to a lightening quick start in the second half, as Payne sent Marsh down the right who stood up a cross with the defender needing to head the ball behind under pressure from Josh Rees.
The subsequent corner flew to the back post where Ndlovu was waiting unmarked to tap home his first competitive goal for the club and net an equaliser almost immediately after the break.
Similarly to the first half, clear chances were very much at a premium in an evenly-matched affair, and there was little in the way of action until the introduction of Egli Kaja, who immediately got involved for the visitors after coming on with 20 minutes to go. The former AFC Wimbledon man drove down the left-hand side before firing a low centre across goal that was deflected out towards Toby Mullarkey in acres of space, who was unable to keep his strike down.
The Robins would go even closer as the game entered the final ten minutes, with Marcus Dinanga smashing the ball against the crossbar with Ashmore beaten.
The game would liven up into the business end of proceedings, with both sides going close. Evans tried a speculative effort from distance which he was unable to keep down, before Dennon Lewis flashed a good strike across goal which went inches wide of the far post after he was played in behind.
Dinanga then had an effort deflected over the crossbar in injury time, moments before the referee brought a close to proceedings.
FT: Boreham Wood 1-1 Altrincham
Boreham Wood: Ashmore, Kelly-Evans, Ilesmani, Evans, Rees, Ndlovu (Newton 75’), Marsh (Williams 86’), Fyfield, Payne, Sousa, Brunt (Lewis 63’)
Subs Not Used: Stephens, Elliott
Goal: Ndlovu 47’
Altrincham: Byrne, Brockbank, Mullarkey, Baines, Lundstram, Osborne, Colclough (Jackon 78’), Conn-Clarke (Kaja 68’), Jones, Bennett (Pringle 73’), Dinanga
Subs Not Used: Hulme, Cooper
Goal: Bennett 45+3’
Star Man: Lee Ndlovu
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