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Match Reports

Ten-Man Pools Battle For Point

10 March 2018

Pools battled to a hard-earned point against Boreham Wood at The Vic this afternoon.

Matthew Bates’s side withstood some strong pressure from the visitors, particularly once Scott Harrison was sent off just after the hour mark, to pick up a point.

Boreham Wood were on top for much of the opening period of the first half, putting the pressure on Pools without doing too much to test Scott Loach.

With less than ten minutes on the clock, Morgan Ferrier broke at speed down the left to open things up for his team. Lewis Hawkins did well to track back with him and, although the Boreham Wood man got his shot away, he sent it well wide of target.

With the next attack on their goal, the Pools defence had to show some determination to keep the visitors at bay; the lively Bruno Andrade had two of his effort blocked on the line – with one a strong save from keeper Loach.

After a long stoppage for treatment to Tom Champion who picked up a facial injury, the visitors were back on the attack with a great ball from Andrade fizzed into the box from the right. While his ball may have been intended as a cross, it pulled Loach into action as the Pools stopper had to react quickly to tip it over at the near post.

Angelo Balanta was next to try his luck, pushing in from the left to shoot on goal, but his effort was blocked out for a corner. It was Balanta who got up to meet the resulting corner kick but his effort was blocked by the head of Scott Harrison.

Pools were starting to offer more at the other end themselves by now and a Lewis Hawkins volley through the area almost found Michael Woods at full stretch at the far post but just went wide without contact.

And Bates’s side went closest to opening the scoring on 40 minutes with Woods first seeing his shot saved by visiting keeper Grant Smith before Conor Newton stepped up to fire in the rebound, which crashed against the post.

As the half progressed, the tension levels on the pitch rose and by half time, there was a real edge to the game with strong challenges flying in from both teams.

Boreham Wood could have taken the lead just before half time as Andrade shook off the attentions of Harrison to burst through on goal but the big striker sent his shot high over the bar and the teams went in all square at the break.

Morgan Ferrier had the first chance of the second half, pushing in from the left to fire a shot across goal but his effort went past Loach’s far post and out of play.

Blair Adams showed his pace down the left to get a decent cross into the box where Jake Cassidy was waiting. The striker did get up to meet the cross but just couldn’t get enough on it and it went wide at the far post.

Pools were dealt a real blow just after the hour mark when Scott Harrison picked up his second yellow card and was sent off. The defender looked got in a tangle with Ferrier and, after being surround by visiting players, the official gave Harrison his marching orders.

Ten-man Pools now faced some hard work at the back as the visitors looked to take quick advantage of their extra man but there were good clearances from Oates and sub Louis Laing as the danger was cleared.  

Liam Donnelly kick-started a counter attack for Pools, playing in Hawkins who in turn picked out Woods on the left but his cross into the box was deflected wide for a corner.

Lewis Hawkins battled to win the ball back for Pools on the right wing and he played it forward for sub Devante Rodney, who in turn slid a great ball across the face of goal which went untested and out of play.

At the other end, Pools were let off as Mark Ricketts somehow poked wide from close range when he looked set to score, while Scott Loach got down well just after to save an effort from Kane Smith.

The visitors went even closer in the dying minutes as Andrade got in to fire on goal but saw his effort smash against the far post.

Dave Stephens got in to fire a shot from close range late in added time but Liam Donnelly came to the rescue for Pools, blocking the shot at point-blank range on the line to deny the goal.

It was another battling performance from Pools this afternoon as they dug deep and kept a lively Boreham Wood side at bay to earn an important point.

Full Time: Pools 0 Boreham Wood 0

Attendance: 2538 (45 Boreham Wood)

Booked: Featherstone (39), Harrison (43), Magnay (55)

Sent Off: Harrison (65)

Pools: Loach, Magnay, Donnelly, Harrison, Adams, Featherstone, Hawkins (Hawkes 90), Newton (Laing 67), Woods, Oates (Rodney 76), Cassidy.
Subs Not Used: Catterick, Owen.

Boreham Wood: G Smith, K Smith, Woodards (Shakes 68), Ricketts, Stephens, Champion, Murtagh, Andrade, Turley, Balanta, Ferrier.
Subs Not Used: Quigley, Folivi, Doe, Davey.

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