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Hard-fought win puts Cards second

Jacob Greenwood - 27th August 2011

Hard-fought win puts Cards second Woking 1 Basingstoke Town 0
Blue Square Bet South
27th August 2011

The visit of Basingstoke Town saw many old faces back at Kingfield including ex Cards keeper Ashley Bayes, Jay Gasson, Toby Little and manager Frank Gray. Delano Sam-Yorke was not included having failed to recover from a recent hamstring injury. Woking came into the game on the back of two goalless draws against teams that, in the eyes of the management team, only ever came looking for a point and defended to the end with the Cards left frustrated.

Early goals are always key in games such as these and this seemed to be the intention for Woking as an unchanged side from Tuesday’s draw with Eastleigh started with a bang. The game was only four minutes old when a ball over the top was chested down by Sole who was challenged. However the ball dropped straight to the feet of Moses Ademola on the edge of the box who smashed his shot past Ashley Bayes and onto the woodwork. The rebound found Elvis Hammond who slotted home well from close range for his second goal of the campaign.

Gary Hill would have been delighted with the way in which the Cards started and this positive approach continued when Newton won the ball inside the Woking half and charged forward and straight through the Basingstoke midfield. Playing a quick one-two with Moses he then lost the ball on the edge of the box. And the positive attacking style didn’t stop there as Woking again came forward with Sole playing a ball in from a tight angle that ended up cleared off the line.

Basingstoke’s’ only answer to the Cards style of play was to go route one, hitting long balls into the box and relying on set pieces with limited success. They created no real goal threat and came closest on the stroke of half time when Matt Warner tried an overhead kick, which was blocked with the rebound being sent wide.

Half-time: Woking 1 Basingstoke Town 0

The second half started with Dale Binns replaced by Nathan Koranteng to try and reinforce the attacking threat. However this wasn’t evident as early opportunities were passed up with Ademola just missing out on a through ball and Jack King (pictured) smashing a free kick into the defensive wall. Woking were still creating chances and substitute Koranteng made a good run down the left wing, played a good ball into the middle for Elvis to take down. The Woking front man could only mishit his shot.

As time ticked on Basingstoke seemed to grow in confidence and the game was increasingly on top of Woking who were finding it hard to break out of their own half. This new found Basingstoke confidence was again on show when for the second time in the match they tried another overhead kick from a knock down. This time it was Pratt; his effort was closer but still way over the bar and into the Leslie Gosdon stand.

A change was needed for the Cards and on the hour mark Garry Hill replaced Gez Sole and goal scorer Elvis Hammond with Wayne Gray and Jay Davies. However the home side still looked to be hanging on. Every move made to escape their half ended up in giving the ball away to Basingstoke who were right back in the game.

Woking will feel hard done by that they didn’t get a chance to extend their lead after a couple of penalty shouts waved away by the ref. As the game entered the final few minutes Woking were still pushing for a second and had a final chance when Gray flicked on towards the back post but Ademola couldn’t connect. The last key action of the match was a free kick in a central position and a chance for Basingstoke to save a point but Toby Little could only find his namesake in the Woking goal.

Although at times the win was unconvincing Woking can take some positives from the game and, not least, another clean sheet. The win sees Woking move up to second in the table after Dartford and Truro both failed to win. Woking remain unbeaten and have only conceded a single goal to date, giving Cards fans a lot to be positive about ahead of Monday’s trip to Tonbridge Angels.

Woking: Andy Little, Adam Newton, Mike Cestor, Mark Ricketts, Joe McNerney, Adam Doyle, Giuseppe Sole (Jay Davies 64), Jack King, Moses Ademola, Elvis Hammond (Wayne Gray 64), Dale Binns (Nathan Koranteng 46)

Unused subs: Aaron Howe, Paris Cowan-Hall

Booked: Mike Cestor, Adam Newton
Basingstoke Town: Ashley Bayes, Rob Rice, Toby Little, Ross Adams, Jay Gasson, Stuart Lake (Jide Obunbote 76), Wes Daly, Shaun McAuley (Rob Gradwell 64), Tim Sills, David Pratt, Matt Warner (Nathan Smart 82)

Unused subs: Simon Dunn, Wilson Gondwe

MOTM: Jack King

Attendance: 1207
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