Blue Square Bet South
Dover Athletic 0 Boreham Wood 2
by John Mead
Wood extended their current run of excellent form to just one defeat in ten matches with this comfortable win against promotion chasing Whites. Considering Ian Allinson’s team selection problems, Wood were without four of the first names that would appear on the team sheet and sufffered a further blow inside the first half, this was a commendable performance.
First choice ‘keeper Elvijs Putnins joined Mario Noto and Daniel Brathwaite on the injury list, whilst Charlie O’Loughlin was unavailable and Luke Garrard began his three match suspension.
Luckily for Allinson left back Mark Jones made a timely return to action following his lengthy lay off, with Charlie Hunter starting in midfield.
Dover Athletic, having just suffered two back to back defeats at The Crabble against relegation threatened sides, after an impressive points haul on their travels looked a side lacking confidence on the day.
Mauro Vilhete delivered the first goal attempt hitting a dipping drive that tested Whites ‘keeper Mikhael Jaimez-Ruiz after nine minutes. It was the lively Vilhete who again threatened cutting inside before flashing a shot wide of goal. With Dover Athletic merely going through the motions Wood took advantage after nineteen minutes. Graeme Montgomery delivered from the left corner flag finding Callum Reynolds who headed goalwards. Jaimez-Ruiz repelled the effort straight back to the Tamworth Loan player who fed David Bryant inside the six yard area. He flashed home a typical poacher’s goal beyond Jaimez-Ruiz for his twelfth League goal of the Season.
Terry Dixon forced a rare save from Michael Jordan who was protected magnificently all afternoon by a well marshalled Wood defence led by the impressive Reynolds.
Wood’s misfortune came not in the shape of a goal but a nasty head injury to Sam Cox who clashed in an aerial challenge with Glen Southam. He tried in vain to continue but was replaced before half time by PASE player Ruddock Yala, leaving the diminutive Barnet Loan player to depart the Crabble by ambulance in some discomfort. Wood continued to comfortably control the game after the interval playing the offside trap in a well disciplined manner.
Vilhete was the source of a number of free kicks conceded in dangerous areas by The Whites as the home side had no answer to his pace and movement.
It was Wood who were playing all the creative football with Whites boss Nicky Forster replacing his non existent forward line as early as the fifty-seventh minute. It did cause Wood minor problems. After seventy minutes Jemal Johnson shot high when picked out by Shane Huke. Fellow Substitute Rob Edmans jinked past Yala and Omar Beckles yet the experience of Jones mopped up any danger.
Billy Bricknell spurned the home side’s best chance shooting wide when well placed, before Hunter hit a speculative curling free kick just wide of the upright at the other end after Vilhete was again hauled down. It was left to star man Vilhete to finish what was an easy win for Wood with two minutes remaining. Skipping past a challenge on the goal line he picked out an unmarked Omer Riza whose first shot had such pace that Mikhael Jaimez-Ruiz could only return the ball to the signing of the Season who picked his spot blasting home the rebound. The win, Wood’s third against the Kent outfit this Season, takes the points tally to fifty-one, four more than last season with six matches still to play.
For Ian Allinson it was, “A very professional performance. The way we approached the game and finished it off was most pleasing. I was pleased with the performances of Charlie Hunter, Michael Jordan, Mark Jones and Ruddock Yala who all stepped up today joining a successful Squad and seamlessly took us forward. I must also mention Omar Beckles who has been asked to play in a number of different positions of late and for such a young player still learning his trade that was possibly his best game for us.”
Team: Jordan, Sankofa, Jones, Hunter, Reynolds, Beckles, Vilhete (Sub – Hutton 90+3 mins.), Cox (Sub – Yala 41 mins.), Bryant, Riza (Sub – Rubinia 90+2 mins.), Montgomery.
Subs ~(Not used): Close, Lewis.
Bookings: Reynolds, Riza.
Goals: Boreham Wood: Bryant 19, Riza 88.
Man of the Match: Mauro Vilhete.