Saturday 20th April 2013


Evo-Stik Southern League Central Division

  Godalming Town 1  Northwood 1   

Harris 48

Grant 37

Team line-up  

  Team line-up
1 Jake Somerville     1 James Reading
2 Wes Harrison     2 Scott Raper
3 Ryan Lake     3 Lee Grant
4 Guy Hollis     4 Brad Hewitt
5 Adam Foulser     5 Reece Yorke
6 Jack Broome     6 Craig White
7 Johnnie Dyer     7 Jon-Jo Bates
8 Jamie McClurg     8 Mark  Burgess (65m)
9 Dan Read (85m)     9 Reon Thomas
10 Darren Wheeler     10 Oliver Hawkins
11 Warren Harris     11 Niko Muir (91m)
Substitutes     Substitutes
12 Jon Palmer     12 Ryan Phillips (91m)
14 Gavin Smith (85m)     14 Adil Salih (65m)
15 Lewis Cotugno     15 -
16 Charlie Marshall     16 Juan Onieva
17 -     17 -
      Referee: Adrian Waters; Assistants: Stephen Hawkes & Peter Meek      
  REPORT by Alan Evans    PHOTOS by James Brown  



Title-chasing Godalming Town had their slim chances of finishing top of the table dashed as the Woods produced a stirring performance to earn their first away draw of the season; ending a run of twenty-nine games without an away draw. Northwood were dealt a blow before kick-off when striker Hallelujah Basmel damaged his ankle in the pre-match warm-up so Reon Thomas stepped up from the bench to replace him in attack.

On a gloriously sunny afternoon, the Woods started brightly with Jon Jo Bates linking up well with Oliver Hawkins who battled down the line and knocked in a fine cross which goalkeeper Jake Somerville just managed to beat Bates to as he looked to get on the end of the inviting pass. The home side peppered the Northwood are with long-range free-kicks and throw-in’s in their efforts to get an advantage but the centre-half pairing of Brad Hewitt and Reece Yorke, together with some safe handling from James Reading, kept opportunities down to a minimum.

Reading pushed one deep cross over the crossbar while another hooked on effort from Dan Read dropped neatly into his arms while Godalming’s only real chance saw Jamie McClurg break for goal but chip the ball over the oncoming keeper on 27 minutes.

Having comfortably survived the aerial bombardment, the Woods then took the lead after 37 minutes with a driving run from Craig White leading to Hawkins combining with Bates to set up White for a cross. That was only half-cleared to the far post where Lee Grant drove a shot past Somerville and into the roof of the net. White then combined with Bates to send over another dangerous cross which was cut out by some resolute defending from the home side as they looked to keep themselves in the game with half-time approaching.

Godalming would need to raise their game but they found Yorke again solid at the back to clear the danger after a rare mistake from Hewitt had given the home side a half-chance just before half-time.

However, it took less than two minutes for the G’s to be gifted an equaliser. The Woods appeared to have cleared the danger after another long ball was pumped in but Bates lost possession as he tried to twist and turn his way upfield and Warren Harris pounced on the loose ball to hammer home a shot which Reading could not get more than fingertips to.

Despite having pulled level, Godalming were unable to raise their game to the extra gear that they required to win this game and it was Northwood who looked more likely to take the three points. After 58 minutes Niko Muir’s good approach work saw Hawkins combined with Bates again to set up Muir for a strike at goal and the ball beat Somerville but hit the crossbar to deny him a deserved goal.

Somerville had to save again a few minutes later as Grant got forward to exchange passes with Bates and fire for goal but it was straight at the keeper and then Adil Salih introduced fresh legs to the Woods midfield in place of the injured Burgess. The Woods best chance of winning the game came after 67 minutes when a ricochet in midfield set Bates through on goal but with just the keeper out to narrow the angle he steered a shot wide of him but also just wide of the far post.

Almost immediately, the home side had a half-chance as a long throw dropped into the box and a header at the far post dropped over the bar. There were half-hearted appeals for a penalty when Thomas went down trying to get on the end of a Grant cross and it was Bates who had the last effort, latching onto a knock down from Hawkins but firing just over the bar.

So, it will be the play-offs against for Godalming Town while the Woods can continue to play spoilers this week as they travel to Royston Town, another side looking for a play-off place, away on Tuesday night.