07 September 2013
Dave Pursglove's match picture album here
Alfreton Town maintained their 100 per cent home record with their fourth win of the season at the Impact Arena when Woking were beaten 3-1.
A brace from recalled midfielder Tom Shaw and a late strike from substitute Daniel Meadows secured the points, despite the visitors putting up a positive performance throughout an entertaining encounter.
Ironically it was Meadows who had been replaced by Shaw in the starting line-up, while Paul Clayton was preferred to Daniel Wishart up front.
Two changes at the back saw Michael Wylde make his first start for the club, having played most of the previous game when Chris Westwood was injured early at Forest Green, whilst Luton Town loanee Nathaniel Rowe-Turner made a promising and positive debut at left back at the expense of Connor Franklin.
Opening exchanges were tentative but goals at either end in the ninth and tenth minutes livened up proceedings, Shaw striking first to convert Job Ayo Akinde's by-line cross from eight yards with the outside of his boot after the striker had advanced powerfully down the left flank.
Woking though were level within sixty seconds, with Gavin Williams smashing a penalty past Reds' keeper Ross Atkins after Bradley Wood had inadvertently handled as he tackled Kevin Betsy to the left of goal.
Atkins confidently punched clear an awkward Williams corner with one hand on 16 minutes, then at the other end Josh Law's free-kick from distance brushed the top of the net.
Clayton's superb flick through sent Akinde scampering towards goal in the 26th minute, but a crucial tackle by Mike Cestor halted his run, then Dan Bradley swept the loose ball across from the right with keeper Aaron Howe punching clear.
Three minutes later Woking would have taken the lead but for Atkins parrying Guiseppe Sole's shot from ten yards after being sent through by Lee Sawyer, then when Sole tried to pick out Betsy at the back post a cool header back by Wood to his keeper nullified the danger.
There was more to come from the Surrey visitors in the 34th minute when Williams embarked on a run before smashing the ball against the underside of the crossbar, the rebound too sharp for Betsy to do any other than loop an innocuous header into Atkins' custody.
Alfreton responded with Clayton sending a header from eight yards just over from Wood's corner, then Jack Parkinson cleared off the line from Nick Fenton's stretching back post header from Law's free-kick.
The Reds were 2-1 to the good in the 43rd minute following Wood's long throw from the right, keeper Howe failing to make a clean punch which allowed Shaw to fire from the edge of the six-yard box, before following up from the same spot after his initial effort had been blocked.
As quiet an opening period to the start of the second half as had been experienced at the beginning gave way on the hour to more end-to-end action, with Clayton's attempted volley blocked at source by Joe McNerney before Williams again went close for Woking.
Bradley saw a shot from 22 yards almost deceive Howe then a header from ten yards by the midfielder was held by the keeper from Wood's deep cross in the 69th minute.
Play swung instantly in the opposite direction though and Atkins needed to sprawl full length to his right to divert a low drive from Betsy, then back at the other end Akinde lodged the ball under his feet after being put through again by Clayton.
Atkins held Anthony McNamee's shot from the edge of the area on 77 minutes, then five minutes later a strong by-line run by Akinde needed Sole's attention to hack clear for the Cardinals.
Substitute Gavin McCallum's accurate shot lacked power, but still needed to be dealt with by Atkins low to his right with two minutes left on the clock, then the home keeper held Cestor's close-range header from a Mark Ricketts cross in added time.
Alfreton clinched the win with virtually the last kick of the game as Woking committed all their resources to attack, but the quality of the move was outstanding once Bradley's clearance had picked out Akinde in space.
The Reds' leading scorer could have opted to increase his tally but slid the ball neatly across the edge of the area instead for John McGrath to see his shot parried by Howe.
Surely most strikers would have shied at goal given a repeat chance from the same position when the loose ball came back to him, but once again Akinde picked up a colleague with an identical pass and this time Meadows buried it in the corner of the net from just inside the penalty area for his first goal of the campaign.
Alfreton Town Team:
01 Ross Atkins
02 Bradley Wood
05 Michael Wylde
07 Josh Law
10 Dan Bradley
16 Nick Fenton
21 Lathaniel Rowe-Turner
08 Tom Shaw
17 John McGrath
09 Paul Clayton (12 Daniel Meadows, 87 mins)
18 Job Ayo Akinde
Substitutes not used:
03 Connor Franklin
14 Alastair Taylor
11 Kristian Ramsey-Dickson
13 Daniel Wishart
01 Aaron Howe
04 Mark Ricketts
05 Joe McNerney
06 Brett Johnson (03 John Nutter, 19 mins)
08 Jack Parkinson
15 Mike Cestor
07 Lee Sawyer
09 Gavin Williams
11 Kevin Betsy
20 Josh Payne (29 Gavin McCallum, 85 mins)
10 Giuseppe Sole (14 Anthony McNamee, 65 mins)
Substitutes not used:
18 Sam Beasant
16 George Frith
Alfreton Town - Tom Shaw (9 & 43), Daniel Meadows (90+3)
Woking - Gavin Williams (10, penalty)
Alfreton Town - Job Ayo Akinde (65, foul on McNerney)
Woking - Josh Payne (16, foul on Dan Bradley), Mike Cestor (39, foul on Job Ayo Akinde)
Shots on target
Alfreton 3, Woking 4
Shots off target
Alfreton 3, Woking 5
Alfreton 3, Woking 5
Alfreton 9, Woking 9
Alfreton 2, Woking 2
Alfreton Town 51 per cent, Woking 49 per cent
Man of the Match: Tom Shaw
Referee: Darren England of Barnsley