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DAGENHAM & REDBRIDGE 3 WOKING 2

Natalie Kaye
12:00am, Sun 7th Jan 2007
3pm on Saturday 6 January 2007
Nationwide Conference

Woking battled against rain, mud, and injuries, but were eventually beaten 3-2 by Conference leaders Dagenham and Redbridge.

The Cards lined up with Shwan Jalal in goal and Karl Murray and Danny Bunce filling the full-back positions. New loan signing Jason Pearce partnered Matt Ruby in the centre of defence. Captain for the day Steve Evans was joined by Sam Cockerill in the middle of the park, supported by Goma Lambu on the right, and Giuseppe Sole on the left. Jamie Taylor played up front with another new signing; Liam Marum from Cambridge. Injuries to Simon Jackson, Neil Smith, Gary MacDonald, Ian Selley, Craig McAllister, Liam Cockerill, Ollie Berquez, Shola Oyedele and Aaron Howe meant that Glenn was only able to name three substitutes.

With the rain lashing down on a heavy pitch, the Daggers had the first chance of the match, after 2 minutes. A ball over the top of the Woking defence was met by Dagenham striker Craig Mackail-Smith. His attempted lob over Jalal fell to fellow striker Paul Benson at the far post, whose shot hit the side netting.

Woking however, hit the back of the net first. Evo won a free kick 30 yards out, which he took himself. His set play was met by Shane Blackett who headed into his own net under pressure giving Daggers keeper Tony Roberts no chance.

Dagenham hit back 8 minutes later in the 13th minute to make it 1-1. Loanee Jason Pearce blocked a Daggers shot which resulted in a corner. The corner sailed over Jalal before being headed back towards goal. Craig Mackail-Smith was on hand to poke the ball past a couple of bodies over the line.

Woking pressed forward looking for the advantage again, and Evo won a free kick in the 21st minute. The set play was headed out of ?keeper Roberts hands by his own player Anwar Uddin which resulted in a Woking corner. Gez ran over to take it and his cross fell to Danny Bunce. The full back?s shot was blocked and Dagenham turned the tables; hitting the Cards on the break. The loose ball was met by Sam Sloma who led the counter-attack and ran down the right wing before eventually aiming a cross into Mackail-Smith. His first touch let him down and the ball rolled out for a goal kick to the Cards.

Sam Cockerill lost the ball in midfield not long afterwards, but Matt Ruby won a vital tackle to stem the Dagenham attack. He saw the ball out of play, but injured himself in the process. The throw in resulted in a shot being blocked.

Anwar Uddin then headed over from another long throw, but it was Woking who made it 2-1. Goma won a corner which Gez took and Jason Pearce?s looping header gave the Cards the lead once again.

Evo had a shot blocked for the away side and Sam Sloma?s turn and shot was blocked by Sam Cockerill as the first half drew to a close. Dagenham had the last say however, making it 2-2 to send the teams in on level terms. Mackail-Smith prodded home his second of the match following a cross from the left which was missed by the Woking defence.

Just before half time the ailing Matt Ruby was stretchered off to be replaced by Steve Ferguson. Karl Murray went into the centre of defence and Gez went to right back. Fergie joined the fray in Gez?s position on the left wing.

Half time: Woking 2-2 Dagenham and Redbridge

Once the ?interesting? (!) half time entertainment was over, the Cards looked to take the lead again. Liam Marum out-paced his marker and turned inside before passing to Taylor in space, but his effort was blocked.

Paul Benson snatched at a cross and sliced wide of Woking?s goal after Mackail-Smith had got a cross in, whilst at the other end Marum won a free kick after turning his marker. Evo?s 25 yard set play was claimed by Tony Roberts.

Jamie Taylor made space for himself in the 56th minute in the middle of the park. His shot from 20 yards out went just wide of Roberts? right hand post. Dagenham too had a chance not long afterwards, when Shwan saved Benson?s close range effort from inside the area.

The two front men Taylor and Marum played a neat one-two which saw Liam through on goal. Roberts rushed out of goal and succeeded in blocking Marum?s shot, which went wide for a corner. Liam was injured in the process and was replaced by Saheed Sankoh.

Dagenham took the lead 14 minutes before the whistle. Danny Foster?s shot from distance was tipped over by Shwan for a corner. Sam Sloma stepped up to take it and Paul Benson headed home to make it 3-2 to the home side.

Saheed had a shot saved as the second half drew to a close, but the Cards couldn?t force an equaliser.

Dagenham move 3 points clear at the top of the table, but Woking will feel aggrieved to have not grabbed a point. It was a fighting performance from the Cards who stay 12th despite the defeat.

Woking: Jalal, Murray, Ruby (Ferguson), Pearce, Bunce, Lambu, Evans, S. Cockerill, Sole, Taylor, Marum (Sankoh)

Sub not used: Bittner

Att: 1389

Booked: None

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