Bognor Regis Town 1-1 Enfield Town
The Towners travelled down to the South Coast yesterday looking to improve on the results and performances seen so far this season. The first half won’t live long in the memory, however, as the quality of the football generally didn’t match the usual high quality playing surface. Both sides routinely gave the ball away cheaply as the Towners crowded out the Rocks in midfield, but too often resorted to pumping long high balls to the forwards, which the Rocks defence dealt with comfortably.
The only moments of real note were a caution to each side, Nathan Livings for a foul on Alex Parsons and Daryl Wollers for tripping Kenny Orenuga. The Rocks were forced to make two substitutions due to injury – Gary Charman coming on for Doug Tuck and Alfie Rutherford for Parsons – and the closest either team coming to scoring was a shot from the edge of the box by Rocks forward Ollie Pearce which went just wide following a neat lay-off by Jason Prior in the 16th minute. Stuart Green’s attempt just before half-time was also wide of the target.
Half-time: Bognor Regis Town 0 Enfield Town 0
The introduction of Tyler Campbell for Orenuga at half-time saw the game open up, and the Towners becoming more adventurous. However, it was the Rocks who came closest to break the deadlock in the opening 10 minutes of the second period. Firstly, on 50 minutes, a Pearce corner to the far post was met powerfully by the head of Prior, but the effort was blocked on the goal line by Livings. Then, three minutes later, another right wing cross from Pearce was headed goalwards by El-Abd from near the penalty spot but it went too close to McDonald in the Towners goal. Finally, a couple of minutes later, a low hard cross following a surging run by Rutherford on the right wing was met by Prior at the far post, but the prolific striker blasted wide.
The Towners then rallied, the ball being played more to the feet of Campbell and Devyne, allowing the forwards to run at the Rocks defence, which proved to be far more effective. On 63 minutes, playing the ball on the deck got its reward when the Towners took the lead through Bobby Devyne. Following good build-up play on the right by Lockie and Parcell, the ball was played to the edge of the box, and eventually found its way to Campbell. His through-ball found Devyne unmarked, who dinked the ball over Smith in the Rocks goal.
Town then had the better of the next 10-15 minutes, but could not find that elusive second goal. That proved costly as the Rocks pushed forward in the last 10 minutes, laying siege to the visitors’ goal. With just two minutes left on the clock, the Rocks attacked down the right, a long high cross to the left side of the penalty box eluded the defence and found Pearce unmarked. The forward controlled the ball and rifled a shot across McDonald, the ball was seemingly going wide until the unfortunate Ricky Gabriel, chasing back, helped the ball into the net.
The Rocks almost snatched all three points at the death, deep into the three minutes of stoppage time, when a corner from the right by Pearce was met powerfully by Prior again and the header was blocked on the line by Livings. All in all, it was a much improved performance and a draw a fair reflection of the 90 minutes.
Full-time: Bognor Regis Town 1 Enfield Town 1
Read more here: http://www.enfieldtownfootballclub.co.uk/teams/65370/match-centre/1-1607205
Photo courtesy: Tom Scott, Enfield Town website