Saturday 17th April 2021
Berks County 4 Wraysbury Village 2
10-man Stags lose out in the end against unbeaten County.
After back-to-back wins and with County dropping points last Monday, we went into this game full of confidence at Binfield.
There were a few changes from Monday night’s win over Windlesham, Ollie Pitt returned in the back three in place of Paul Abbott, who dropped to the bench. Cristiano Nascimento was back after a lengthy ban for his first appearance since October at left wing back in place of Dan Stock. Codie Sumner was back in the starting eleven for Josh Christopher and Billy Hart also returned for Ben Landi.
Without a doubt, probably the toughest game of the season so far and it certainly felt that way after an early Berks County goal after 4 minutes. We looked a bit nervous. Then Mitch Dunstall was forced off early with a knock and was replaced by Ben Landi.
Then just before the half hour mark it was 2-0 to the home side from a free-kick. It was looking like it was going to be an uphill struggle.
10 minutes later, and some hope, as we won a penalty which was converted by Stan Anum for his first goal for the club! Back in the game. Half-time came with the score that way, giving us the belief now we can get a result in this.
Second half and another change had to be made when our captain, Paul Reed was suffering with a calf problem and was replaced by Paul Abbott.
Throughout the second half the momentum was with us. Mitch Dunstall felt fit enough to come back on for Billy Hart and then with 23 minutes to go it was Dunstall who had a shot of which he was certain was going in he was already running away celebrating, only for it to hit the post…luckily for him the rebound was touched in by Anum for his second of the match. 2-2! What a comeback. The belief was with us to go on and take all 3 points.
But then disaster struck, George Dewhurst picked up a second booking and was sent off. Hoping to still be able to hold on, Berks managed to get a third goal with a header from a free-kick. 2-3. All that hard work to get back into the game seem to evaporate.
Our last change saw Matty Hursey replace Alfie Fairhall before Berks County managed to put the result to bed when a break from our corner was put away to make it 4-2 and that was how it finished.
Such a shame we couldn’t get the result today but we pick ourselves up again and comeback next weekend. Long way to go yet!
Man of the Match was our goalkeeper Matty Bonnett who pulled off a string of top saves including a double save. There can’t be many keepers who are better than him at this level!
The Stags (3-4-1-2): Bonnett; Pitt, Dewhurst, Reed (c) (Abbott); Fairhall (Hursey), Sumner, Homes, Nascimento; Dunstall (Landi); Anum, Hart (Dunstall).
Goalscorer: Anum (2) (1p)
Booked: Dewhurst, Pitt