Woking 3 Rushden & Diamonds 1

Match Report courtesy of Unofficial Rushden & Diamonds Website (1997-2001)

11th April 2000 – Kingfield (Attendance: 1765)

Rushden Team: Turley, Peters, Hamsher, Mills, Rodwell, Warburton, Butterworth, Brady, Town, Sigere, Underwood.
Substitutes: De Souza, Naylor, Cramman, Bradshaw, Stowell

Diamonds Scorers: Town – 47 mins, Sigere – 75 & 90 mins

Webmasters MoM: Underwood

Brian Talbot made several changes to the side that had been beaten by both Morecambe and Kidderminster in the previous two matches. After good performances from David Town and Jean-Michel Sigere when they came into the match from the substitutes bench on Saturday, they were both given the chance in the starting line up.

Rushden & Diamonds received a major setback even before the kick off when Simon Wormull twisted his back in the pre-match warm up. Jon Brady returned to the team with Matty Stowell taking his place on the bench. Neither side seemed able to acclimatise to the difficult conditions on a wet pitch in the first half before a sparse attendance by Woking and Rushden & Diamonds standards and both goalkeepers were rarely brought into action.

The game burst into life in the the 47th minutes when Paul Underwood fed Jean-Michel Sigere wide on the right. The French debutant took on Hayfield and his cross from the left found David Town who turned his marker and beat Batty into the left corner of the net. Woking retaliated and Akrour evaded Jim Rodwell and Ray Warburton only to see his shot go the wrong side of the post.

The home side equalised in the 61st minute when the referee’s strange interpretation of the advantage rule led to a free kick midway in the Diamonds half. Billy Turley seemed to misread Hayfield’s deep cross and Steve West was left with a free header. Woking took the initiative for a short while and it took some desperate defending by the visitors to keep parity.

However, Diamonds again took the lead on 75 minutes when Mark Peters sent a long ball down the right wing. John Hamsher looked to have let the ball run out of play, but he managed to cross for Jean-Michel to place a brave header past Batty.

Woking desperately fought for an equaliser but the Diamonds defended bravely. In the last minute Sigere made the game safe when he ran on to a long clearance, beat Miller for pace, and rounded Batty before shooting into the empty net.

The squad will now know that it is all still to play for, a hard task to overtake Kiddy but if they start to slip up during their remaining matches who knows what the outcome will be. Of course they have the upper hand, but if the Diamonds keep the pressure on, Kidderminster might feel the pressure at the top. Watch this space !!!!

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