Borough’s play-off chances lost in the woods

Lewis Tallack competes for a high ball
Lewis Tallack competes for a high ball

Eastbourne Borough suffered a third successive away loss and another blow to their Skrill South play-off chances as Boreham Wood struck early to win all three points at Meadow Park, writes Stephen Kent.

Elvis Hammond gave Borough hope after levelling a few minutes after Graeme Montgomery’s 25-yard strike, before Lee Angol’s penalty and Kudus Oyenuga’s tap-in effectively finished the game off in the first half.

From the beginning it was a high-tempo encounter between the teams and it took the home side only four minutes to open the scoring after Josh Hill’s cross rebounded to Montgomery outside the box who blasted it past Craig Ross into the bottom-right corner of the net.

Borough responded quickly to level with a goal of their own just five minutes later as Hammond chipped over keeper James Russell after superbly controlling the ball from Stacy Long’s high pass.

The momentum should have swung back in Borough’s favour but the Wood continued to press and they were rewarded with a penalty ten minutes later after Ian Simpemba brought down a surging Angol, who then coolly converted from the spot to once again put them ahead.

Although Hammond continued to look dangerous on the break, the visitors were unable to hold to the ball for long and shortly later Boreham Wood extended their lead after Montgomery’s low cross through past the six-yard line slipped pass Ross to Oyenuga who tapped in at the far post.

After the break the pace of the game had slowed down so Borough manager Tommy Widdrington brought on Tom Derry and Ollie Rowe in place of Charlie Gorman and Adam Watts to inject some life into his side.

The changes did little much to improve their chances, as the Hertfordshire side continued to look the most dangerous in the final minutes and they nearly had a fourth after Angol almost beat Ross at his far post with a lobbed effort from outside the box.

As with the same fixture last year where Borough lost 2-1 at Boreham Wood, Widdrington thought that once again the referee ran the show.

“The penalty that put them 2-1 up was very harsh, I can’t see what he has seen in it. The one consistency with the officials at this level is the inconsistency, every week you don’t know what you are going to get.

“Fair play to Boreham Wood though, they are a good side and their current league position doesn’t reflect that at the moment. I fully expect them to finish the season stronger than they started it,” he added.

Widdrington was also quick to play down Borough’s play-off hopes, “I never thought we were in with a chance really, everyone always kept talking us up.

“I liken these players to a Grand National horse at the moment. They can get to the shoulder but they just can’t get past it at the moment!

“Their experiences this year will stand them in good stead and will hopefully allow them to race past the other horses next season.”

With their last three matches being away from home, Borough will no doubt be relishing being back at Priory Lane tomorrow (Saturday) afternoon when they take on fellow mid-table side Gosport Borough.

Boreham Wood - Russell, Nunn, Morgan (Jones ‘45) , Cox (c), Hill, Reynolds, Whichelow, Shakes, Oyenuga, Angol, Montgomery. Unused subs: Noto, Pires, Brown, Courtnage

Eastbourne Borough - Ross, Tallack, Cole, Gorman (Derry ‘69), Simpemba (c), Watts (Rowe ‘66), Long, Raymond, Hammond, Johnson, Aldred. Unused subs: Levy, Deaman, Lok,

Attendance: 141