Pools Come From Behind To Draw

Gime Toure, Boreham Wood v Hartlepool United

Gime Toure lashed home his first goal since December and Ben Killip saved a penalty as Pools came from behind to claim a point at Boreham Wood on Saturday afternoon.

The French front man rifled in a leveller early in the second half after Pools had fallen behind to Kabongo Tshimanga’s opener in the first minute of the game.

Dave Challinor’s side were thankful to Killip’s heroics when he got down low to stop Sorba Thomas’ weak penalty and help keep the score at 1-1 and protect the point.

Pools began with an unchanged starting eleven for the third game in succession at Meadow Park against a side whom they are yet to taste defeat against in five previous encounters.

However, having been beaten at Aldershot in midweek, Luke Garrard’s hosts were out of the traps quickly and forced a corner inside thirty seconds. When Pools failed to fully clear, the ball was nodded back in to the area to Matt Rhead – the flag stayed down and his header was brilliantly finger-tipped on to the post by Killip only for Tshimanga to sweep home the rebound.

The early setback knocked Pools off-balance and they struggled to gain a foothold in the opening ten minutes as the hosts continued to apply pressure, particularly down the left flank.

With 15 minutes on the clock, Pools finally began to clear their heads and could have been level after a good move down the left involving Mark Kitching and Toure but Luke Molyneux’s drive was blocked.

Kitching then let fly from distance but his shot flew too high before Rob Harker turned neatly inside the area but his shot was deflected on to the roof of the net.

There was a sloppy moment at the back for Pools when Killip’s clearance hit Gary Liddle on the back and fell for Tshimanga but this time the front man’s shot when straight at the keeper.

Boreham Wood could have doubled their advantage when Tyrone Marsh nodded a corner just wide but Mark Shelton had a great chance to level right on half-time when he ran on to Toure’s cut back but fired a shot straight at Nathan Ashmore in The Wood goal.

However, the ball was in the net within two minutes of the restart when Toure got space on the left side of the penalty area and lashed an unstoppable shot past Ashmore at his front post to make it all-square.

Just three minutes later and the home side had a golden chance to recover their lead when the referee pointed to the penalty spot after the ball struck Nicky Featherstone’s hand – but Thomas’ soft penalty was saved down to his right by Killip.

Kane Smith thought he’d made it 2-1 when Pools didn’t fully clear a ball in to the box and wing-back smashed a powerful volley towards goal which came back out off the bar.

There were strong appeals for a penalty at the other end when Southam-Hales darted to the byline and appeared to be shoved over but this time referee Hull was unmoved and waved play on.

There were half chances at both ends during a nervy finale but Pools stood firm and picked up a creditable point on the road ahead of another tough away assignment at Solihull Moors on Tuesday.

Full Time: Boreham Wood 1 Pools 1

Boreham Wood: Ashmore, Fyfield, Ilesnami, Champion, Ricketts, Smith, May, Thomas, Marsh, Rhead, Tshimanga (Shaibu 61).
Subs not used: G Smith, Stephens, Mingoia, Yussuf.

Booked: K Smith, Ricketts.

Pools: Killip, Southam-Hales, Liddle, Odusina, Kitching, Featherstone, Shelton, Donaldson, Molyneux (Hawkes 52), Toure, Harker (Holohan 70).
Subs: Anderson, Mafuta, Keena.

Booked: Southam-Hales.

Attendance: 932 (334 Pools)

Referee: Joe Hull.