Late strike denies Tons a superb win
CLAPTON picked up an excellent point against league leaders Romford at the weekend, writes Adam Dennehey. It could have been even better for the Tons too, as they almost inflicted Romford s first defeat of the season, only to concede an equaliser with jus
CLAPTON picked up an excellent point against league leaders Romford at the weekend, writes Adam Dennehey.
It could have been even better for the Tons too, as they almost inflicted Romford's first defeat of the season, only to concede an equaliser with just five minutes remaining.
The visitors got into their stride quickly, as Rob Port crossed for Jimmy Noakes to head home early on.
Clapton responded well though and hit back five minutes later as star man Troy Hewitt blasted home.
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It was his 13th league goal of an exciting season so far, in which his form must be alerting clubs higher up the football pyramid.
Both teams cancelled each other out for much of the first half, although Romford's Ben Turner did hit the bar with a header.
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The Tons grabbed an unexpected lead after the break, when Robert Olayinka's ball forward was misjudged by the defence and Hewitt fed Stefan Lawrence, whose shot was too much for Danny Mulrooney.
It was almost three for the home side moments later, but Andy Williams dragged a volley wide of the goal after a fine Hewitt cross.
With Clapton now looking dangerous, Romford's unbeaten league record was really under threat.
The introduction of visiting substitute Manzi Mbala changed the game though, and only a fine save from Joe Wright stopped a goal.
He wasn't to be denied though, as from his cross late on, Bradley Walsh fired the loose ball home via a deflection to earn Romford a point.
Clapton: Wright, Dje-Dje, Barnes, Ladeja, Chea, Olayinka, Orton, Nwankwo, Lawrence, Hewitt, Williams.