Wednesday, February 13, 2013
TWO goals in 84 seconds and some questionable officiating gave Royston Town three precious points against Uxbridge in their quest for Southern League glory, writes Jez Izod.
Uxbridge attacked from the off with Nicke Kabamba attacking down the left flank, his cross found Matt Woods who shot just over.
A minute later, a sloppy clearance from Lee Wilson provided Wayne Carter an opportunity to shoot, but his effort was saved superbly by the returning Will Norris in the Royston goal.
The eighth minute saw Royston Town fans pay their own tribute to Luke Reynolds, a fellow Crow who passed away from cancer aged just 20 years old. Uxbridge fans also joined in with the minute’s applause and chanting.
On 10 minutes Luke Robins ghosted past Mark Dennison and slotted past Matt Elston-Bull. There was a suspicion of offside and with the home side still protesting the goal, poor defending found Kaan Fehmi lurking just outside the area and his volley smashed past the hapless home keeper.
Royston pressed forward and with the Crows looking for a crucial third goal to kill the game as a contest, Wilson scampered forward and his cross found Robins, but just as the number 11 was pulling the trigger, Dennsion cut out the ball and safely cleared.
Uxbridge pressed forward and on 23 minutes Wayne Carter let fly with a powerful shot, this brought out a world class save from Norris. The Royston stopper had to be alert again five minutes later when Madiban’s free-kick looked destined for the back of the net, only to be denied again by Norris.
The best move of the half followed on 32 minutes with fluent passing brought a shot by Ryan Lockett, this effort was tipped over by the home stopper.
The second half saw Uxbridge attack from the whistle and brought the games most controversial moment.
Kabamba beat Wilson and as he moved into the area, was brought down by Jack Bradshaw. To the anger and astonishment of the home side, the referee signalled play on and the Crows cleared the danger.
With Uxbridge still protesting furiously, the referee brought a tempory halt to proceedings to issue a warning to the home bench.
Uxbridge pressed forward and Norris produced another world class save from the dangerous Woods. With momentum firmly with the home side, the referee caused further uproar by calling for a change in footballs thus allowing Royston to re-group.
Desperate defending was the call of the day with last ditch tackles made by Bradshaw and De La Salle as the home side pressed forward on 70 minutes.
With Royston rocking, Mark Smith burst into the area, but Norris saved bravely at his feet.
The Crows had their own reason to be slightly aggrieved with the officiating as Robins was blatantly taken out in the Uxbridge area by a desperate Elston-Bull.
With the Crows protesting furiously, the referee booked Fehmi for his protestations. This was greeted by howls of derision from the away bench and fans as Uxbridge had escaped any form of reprimand earlier on.
On 78 minutes came the strangest decision of the day when Royston’s Wilson was booked for not taking a throw-in the correct manner.
With just 10 minutes remaining of normal time, Royston were content on playing keep ball to play time out.
With seven minutes of added time, relief and celebration greeted the final whistle as howls of derision greeted the departing officials from the home contingent.