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Tuesday 06 September 2005
Ryman League, Premier Division

AFC Wimbledon    1 - 1    Bromley
Shane Smeltz (72)
  (02) Barry Gardner
 Andy Little 1 Andy Walker 
 Antony Howard 2 Andrew Julius 
 Dave Sargent 3 Mark Willy 
 Wayne Finnie 4 Tutu Henriques 
 Steve Butler 5 Joe Vines 
 Mark Cooper 6 Des Boateng ( 32) 
(sub 58)  Craig Carley 7 Barry Gardner (sub 82) 
 Barry Moore 8 Sam Wood 
 Shane Smeltz 9 Adolf Amoako 
(sub 80)  Matt York 10 Nic Mcdonnell 
 Sonny Farr 11 Alan McLeod (sub 52) 
(sub 80)  Michael Woolner 12 Wade Falana 
 Josh Lennie 13  
(sub 58)  Wes Daly 14 Fraser Logan (sub 52) 
 Stefan Wojciechowski 15 Henry Darko (sub 82) 
 Simon Sobihy 16 Colin Luckett 
  17 Adam Locke 

Match report

Wimbledon 1 Bromley 1

Wimbledon notched up their third consecutive 1-1 with this gripping midweek encounter at the Meadow. This match broadly followed the blueprint of Saturday?s trip to East Thurrock ? a soft goal conceded in the 2nd minute, the Dons then getting an equaliser in the second half but not ultimately able to go on and grab all the points.

The Lillywhites must have been delighted to discover that our Great Goal Lead Giveaway promotion had been held over for a second match. The problems started with a long throw down by the corner flag, hurled into our penalty area by the visitors? captain McLeod. An inconclusive first challenge sent the ball looping into the air much to the confusion of nearest defender Steve Butler who completely lost track of it. Like a man being menaced by a persistent circling fly, his head jerked frantically from side to side as he searched desperately for it. He looked everywhere except right in front of him which is where the ball landed, giving Gardner a simple opportunity to shoot low into the net.

With Matt Fowler not fit enough even for a place on the bench, Shane Smeltz had to spearhead the attack on his own with Carley and Farr offering support down either flank. Smeltz nearly grabbed a spectacular equaliser inside 15 minutes. Receiving the ball on the edge of the box he gracefully sidestepped three Bromley challenges, all in an area roughly equivalent to two Kingsmeadow toilet cubicles, before smashing a fierce right foot shot onto the bar.

Throughout the first half Shane was the focus of our attacking play, consistently winning most every ball that was aimed in his general direction and then using it to set up play. Both Moore and Carley had decent chances carved out for them by the Kiwi Don but Moore curled his shot over the bar while Carley just failed to tame a pass that would?ve left him one on one with their keeper.

Carley also had a semi-credible penalty shout waved away by referee Mr Cook after he looked to have been bundled over in the area while Butler missed a good chance when he headed over after rising to greet a Farr free kick.

Throughout the half the game seemed constantly to be on the cusp of a Wimbledon equaliser but in the end the home team were very fortunate not to go in 2-0 down. Shortly before the break Finnie, like an aging Tiller Girl, waved a tired leg at what was no more than a whacked clearance by a Bromley defender. As Finnie?s leg scythed through fresh air the ball skipped merrily on to land right at the feet of their top scorer Nic McDonnell. He only had Andy Little to beat but that proved too much for him, our keeper whipping the ball away from his feet while he was still deciding which exact spot in the back of the net the ball would be best suited to.

Half Time Wimbledon 0 Bromley 1

The start of the second half signalled the resumption of the hunt for an equaliser. Various chances and half chances were forged, the best of which was a free header from a corner that Howard directed over the bar.

Then around the hour mark there was a sudden shift in play. A neat Bromley passing move set up Gardner with a shooting chance from outside the area that Little pushed round the post. From the resulting corner, McDonnell scooped a shot over the bar.

For the next ten minutes or so the visitors pushed for a decisive second goal. And their pressure paid off ? but at the other end. A cross in from the left evaded a couple of defenders and landed at the feet of Smeltz who did the decent thing and struck it away low into the corner into the goal.

With more than a quarter of an hour to go the home crowd sensed that it might be third time lucky, that this time we could find the goal that turned the 1-1 into victory but it wasn?t to be. As the Dons pushed forward Steve Butler had a firm downward header whipped clear while Moore managed to ping the bar with a shot/ cross from a tight angle. Overall a quality evening?s entertainment spoilt only by the scoreline.

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