Terras hold high-flying hosts to impressive point

Terras hold high-flying hosts to impressive point

Our disciplined performance away to third-place Braintree Town earned us a well-deserved 0-0 draw on Tuesday night at the Rare Breed Meat Co. Stadium.

This marks a notable improvement from our previous outing, which resulted in a 1-0 loss at home to the same opponents.

The standout players on the night were Jordon Thompson and Harvey Wiles-Richards, whose several important challenges and saves ensured that we held firm throughout the match.

The most spectacular stop of the game came seven minutes from time, when Wiles-Richards managed to head away a strike from substitute Jayden Davis.

It was an almost-perfect outcome for birthday boy Bobby Wilkinson, who stated before the game that he wanted us to “take the game to [Braintree].”

The result additionally ensures we remain 15th in the National league South table, one point above Welling United, who have played one more game.

Wilkinson made one change from our clash at home versus The Iron, reinstating previously-suspended Tom Bearwish for Ezio Touray.

Following our loss to the hosts last Saturday, the gaffer rued the lack of clear-cut goalscoring opportunities created by our players.

However, this time round, we would be the most threatening in the opening minutes.

It would take just four minutes to have a sight at Jack Sims’ goal, after Dan Roberts set up Bearwish inside the box.

The skipper would have perhaps given us the lead had he not fired over the bar, surrounded by the Braintree defence.

We appeared dangerous once again just two minutes on, this time through a Leo Hamblin corner.

His delivery picked out Corey Panter, whose header forced Sims to tip over the bar.

Bearwish would have another chance just before the quarter-hour mark, attempting to flick the ball towards goal following another Hamblin delivery.

Brandon Goodship would then force Sims to make a save seven minutes later following a dangerous passage of play between him and Joel Rollinson, the winger feeding him with a through-ball.

Our skipper then attempted a classic Bearwish edge-of-the-box strike moments before the half-hour point, firing the ball just past the post.

However, from this point onwards, the rest of the half saw the hosts grow into the game.

Their increasing confidence began after Braintree captain Baris Altintop tried his luck from approx. 25 yards from goal, four minutes after Bearwish’s opportunity.

The subsequent first-half period saw the hosts enjoy the lion’s share of possession, as our defence were tasked with keeping them at bay.

Their dominance with the ball nearly paid dividends at the end of the half, when Tom Blackwell was on the receiving end of an accurate cross by Reggie Lambe.

The Braintree forward came close to giving his side the lead, firing just wide at the far post.

But, despite their close call, we headed down the tunnel having had much of the first-half chances, the only downside of the 45 minutes involving Charlie Rowan limping off shortly before added time.

After it took a while for both sides to get going in the second half, the first notable action occurred in the hosts’ favour, after Lambe whipped in another dangerous cross, this time to Shaq Coulthirst.

The forward powerfully headed towards Wiles-Richards, who dived to his left to keep the ball out.

It took until the final quarter of the game for us to threaten Sims’ goal once again, but we did just that when Goodship slipped through Roberts with a dangerous pass.

Roberts, however, was unable to convert, seeing the Braintree shot-stopper block his shot.

Then, with just over 15 minutes remaining, Rollinson found himself through on goal, with only the keeper standing in front of him.

The winger, though, was unable to convert his strike, instead firing wide.

Goodship then picked out another teammate with a dangerous delivery, this time to substitute Touray, who headed into the hands of Sims.

Though after Touray’s chance, much like in the first half, the final minutes saw the hosts enjoy possession.

Wiles-Richards would be called into action with seven minutes to go, tasked with keeping out a header from fellow-sub Davis.

However, in rather uncharacteristic fashion, our goalkeeper kept the ball out with his head, crucially ensuring that The Iron did not snatch a late lead.

Davis was then slipped through once more five minutes later, narrowly missing with an attempted flick towards goal.

With stoppage time just round the corner, the referee awarded six additional minutes.

However, despite the lengthy extra amount of time, neither side could find a winner, instead ending the game with a point apiece.

Match report
by Jack Webb

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