Shortwood 2 Kidlington Reserves 2 – UHL Hellenic League
Shortwood surrendered a two-goal lead to share the spoils against a Kidlington side they previously defeated 6-0, writes Jim Cunneen.
The early exchanges were even but the game appeared to swing in Wood’s favour after just 11 minutes when Cox was rightly shown a straight red for a lunge on top scorer Luke Soule who managed to carry on after treatment until the second half.
Wood took the lead after 18 minutes. A cross in from the left from Nathan Payne was only half cleared to Jake Rhodes who hit a fine shot into the bottom corner. Another cross from Payne appeared to be handled but Wood’s appeals were waived away as the keeper gathered.
Wood had more early chances in the second half but their shooting was poor until they doubled their lead after 54 minutes. Freeman came out at Soule’s feet but the ball ran straight to Payne who shot home into the empty net. The game seemed done and dusted. Rhodes spooned over a good chance, Payne shot too close to the keeper but then the game changed.
Kidlington started to push forward more and forced three corners. After 73 minutes a cross fell in the Wood box and as Muir went to gather he was blatantly pulled back and James netted. To Wood’s consternation the referee, after consulting his assistant, allowed the goal to stand. Wood were stunned. Barely a minute later they were caught as a through ball found the unmarked Farah whose finish was impeccable.
Wood turned up the heat – another penalty appeal was waived away before Wood thought they had scored the winner with 10 minutes to go. A cross in found its way to Nathan Marks who volleyed home at the far post. Wood celebrated only to find the referee disallowing it for a mysterious hand ball. Again the referee consulted with his assistant but despite the protests disallowed the goal.
Rhodes had a header cleared off the line, Freeman made a point blank save to deny the same player and Kidlington held out under extreme pressure. Wood were left shaking their heads while Kidlington were delighted with their point
Shortwood: Muir, Marks K, Barrett, Tunnicliff (Marks N 67), Tryner, Byrnes, Payne, Rhodes, Soule (Peyton 55), Eakers (Tosdevine 65), Earle (Harper Emerson 69)