Sutton Common Rovers 2  Northwood 2

Saturday 24th February 2024


1 Andrew McCorkell
2 Sam Jenkins (95m)
3 Deago Dunbar Bonnie (89m)
4 Carl Stewart (79m)
5 Luke Tingey ©
6 Harry Gallagher 
7 Adam Laaref
8 Teddy Stacey
9 Lucas Sinclair
10 Dan Williams
11 Kofi Anokye-Boadi
12 Harry McKenna (89m)
14 Harry McCorkell (95m)
15 Stephan Langley
16 Archie James (79m)
17 Martin Flannery

Louie Erotokritos Staussi, Oscar Williams, Antonio Simeone, Bertie Lloyd, Tariq Straker (Ollie Twum 79m), Maxwell Oldham, Tyrese Osbourne , Ben Holden , Ashley Sheppard, Aaron Jenkins (Jayden Smith 58m), Lindell Stewart

In a very open contest where the game swung back and forth throughout, the Woods needed a last-gasp penalty to secure a valuable point on the road on the 3G at Sutton Common Rovers.

In attempting to follow the previous weekend’s defeat of Thatcham Town, manager Ben Bukowski was able to field a completely unchanged squad and starting line-up in an effort to find more consistency, and the Woods started well.

Dan Williams was first on the attack, working space and then firing wide of the target and a minute later Adam Laaref got past his marker to get a shot in on goal but debut goalkeeper Louis Staussi saved by punching away down low to his left.

Immediately, at the other end, Rovers showed that they would be dangerous from set pieces. Bertie Lloyd saw his shot blocked and from the resulting corner, the tall defender sent a powerful headed well over the bar.

Northwood were soon back on the front foot though and a good move led to a dangerous cross from Kofi Anokye-Boadi but Staussi just got to it ahead of Lucas Sinclair as he looked to get the required touch.

The Woods went even closer after 13 minutes when Williams slipped a good ball through for Laaref who, with just the keeper to beat, saw his shot crash back off the post before being cleared.

Five minutes later, the home side had the woodwork to thank again for not being a goal behind as Anokye-Boadi flicked on a Deago Dunbar-Bonnie corner and Harry Gallagher’s shot on the turn took a deflection and hit the bar before Lloyd hooked it to safety.

On 22 minutes, Gallagher picked up a yellow card for a foul on Aaron Jenkins in a dangerous position and Max Oldham forced McCorkell into a good save from the resulting free-kick.

Just three minutes later, Sutton could have been ahead as the Woods lost possession in midfield and a quick ball sent Oldham through one-on-one. He beat Andrew McCorkell with his shot but that also came back off the post and straight into the grateful arms of the Woods keeper.

PHOTOS by James Brown

After 29 minutes, Dunbar-Bonnie enjoyed a good run down the left and got in a clear shot on goal but Staussi managed it out at the near post and the rest of the half became more of a midfield battle with neither side threatening too much. It was only in first half stoppage-time that a Sam Jenkins free-kick tested Staussi again but the young keeper was equal to it, palming the ball away.

Just three minutes into the second half, Northwood were ahead. Sinclair held the ball up well on the right before rolling it back to Teddy Stacey who, from his wide position, took one step and then sent over a deep ball that flew in at the far post, giving the keeper no chance.

Sinclair had a goalbound effort saved by Staussi three minutes later but it was against the run of play that Rovers levelled the scores on the hour. A ball was played across the area and stabbed forward. With the Woods defence appealing for offside, former Northwood striker Lindell Stewart pounced, went past McCorkell and rolled it home for a cool finish.

Again, the Woods went on the offensive to seek a second goal. Sinclair set up Williams for a shot wished flashed across goal but wide of the far post and then when Staussi pushed out a Jenkins corner, Anokye-Boadi hooked the loose ball over the bar.

After 78 minutes, the hard-working Sinclair saw him roll a ball into the path of Carl Stewart but his effort from the edge of the box flew inches over the bar and a minute later a substitution saw Archie James replace Stewart.

It was on 82 minutes that Rovers grabbed the lead. The Woods conceded a free-kick out on the left flank, taken by Antonio Simeone and found Lloyd completely free. He headed the ball back across the six-yard box and the unfortunate Anokye-Boadi could only knock the ball into his own goal.

Five minutes later Jenkins slipped a good ball through to Williams who raced down the right. He was taken out by Lloyd in the box as he got in a dangerous cross but Oldham managed to clear ahead of Sinclair while the Referee failed to see the challenge on Williams.

With time running out, Dunbar-Bonnie blasted a shot across goal and well wide and there was six minutes of stoppage-time added as Harry McKenna and Harry McCorkell were both introduced to the fray late on. And it was in the sixth minute of stoppage-time that McCorkell played a ball through for Sinclair to race into the box. He was taken down by a flailing arm from the keeper and the Woods had a last-minute penalty. Gallagher stepped up and sent Staussi the wrong way from the spot to level things with almost the last kick of the game.

REPORT by Alan Evans