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Wingate & Finchley 1
Beckles-Richards (17')
2 Tonbridge Angels
Turner (70' pen), Small (87')

Angels were forced to come from behind in order to claim all the points at the Maurice Rebak Stadium against relegation threatened Wingate and Finchley.

It was a lacklustre performance from the visitors during the first half and certainly they didn't look like play-off contenders. Their hosts were quicker to the ball and seemed to have the will to win cementing their performance with a goal in the 17th minute by Reece Beckles-Richards driving a free kick through the Tonbridge defence that took a deflection and left the Angels keeper Jonathan Henly helpless. From Tonbridge's point of view it was avoidable with the free kick coming from a mistake in defence which then resulted in a foul committed on the edge of the 18-yard box.

Alex Read who worked hard all game had a ghost of a chance when he beat the offside trap after four minutes but his header was straight at Wingate keeper Shane Gore. Read’s striking partner, Chinedu McKenzie was culpable for missing two very good chances in the 13th and 37th minutes but generally the 50/50 balls went the way of Wingate and Tonbridge seemed to lack ball winners in midfield.In fact it could have got even worse for the visitors when on the half-hour mark Tommy Tejan-Sie hit the base of the post.

After suitable advice in the dressing room during the break it was a very different Angels side that emerged for the second period. Distribution and movement improved immeasurably and they started to put genuine pressure on their hosts. In the 70th minute Read once again making a nuisance of himself in the penalty area was bundled over and the referee pointed to the spot. Joe Turner stepped up and made no mistake with a fierce effort to level things up.

The visitors now had a genuine spring in their step and it was no surprise when they took the lead in the 87th minute with a fine goal worthy of being what proved to the winner. D'Sean Theobalds, the creative heartbeat of the team laid off a short pass to Tom Beere in space who then drove at the Wingate defence slipping the ball to substitute Jared Small for a fine finish.

Afterwards, 1st team coach James Scott said: "We were very flat 1st half but we challenged them at the break asking did they want to get to the playoffs, and in fairness we got a reaction 2nd half."

Published Friday 19th April 2019