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Maidenhead United 2-1 Welling United
HAVING looked relatively untroubled for the first hour, two goals from set pieces, both converted by Mark Nisbet, meant Welling United returned from Maidenhead United empty handed.
After controlling the first fifteen minutes, Welling opened the scoring with a fine goal. Theo Fairweather-Johnson crossed to Ross Lafayette who took one touch to bring the ball down before lashing the ball goalwards. Although goalkeeper Jessi Joronen got a firm hand on the ball, the sheer power of the shot ensured it found its way into the back of the net.
Derek Duncan was cautioned for a foul on Fairweather-Johnson, and from the free kick, Lee Clarke’s header, from Jack Obersteller’s delivery, was saved by debutant Joronen.
Lafayette was cautioned, somewhat harshly by referee Adrian Quelch, and the official then had no choice but to brandish his card again when Chris Flood fouled Obersteller.
Joe Healy’s cross was headed wide by s stretching Jake Gallagher, then Clarke’s goalbound header from Obersteller’s cross was nodded over by Michael Pook.
Nisbet, making his first appearance of the season, showed his defensive prowess with calm covering as Welling looked to finish the first half on a high.
Fairweather-Johnson had an effort pushed over by Joronen early in the second period then a Healy corner came back off the crossbar although, had it gone in, it would have been disallowed as the fussy referee saw something he did not like.
Reece Tison-Lascaris registered the Magpies first shot on target but Sam Mott got down well to push the ball around the post. Welling’s relief was short lived, however, when David Pratt's header from Pook’s delivery was pushed out by Mott, Nisbet was on hand to bundle the ball home.
Scott Kinch was booked in a 50/50 clash of heads as Welling struggled to find their earlier form and with eleven minutes remaining, the hosts went ahead.
Again, poor defending from a soft free kick was punished as Nisbet headed home.
Maidenhead’s captain was less happy moments later when he was cautioned for a foul on Gallagher that was deserving of no more than the award of a free kick. It seemed strange that the official was so keen to wave his card for fouls yet let a tirade of abuse by Bobby Behzadi go unpunished and later took no action on a series of ‘kicking the ball away’ offences.
Fraser Franks headed wide from an Obersteller free kick and Clarke shot over from distance but Maidenhead had a great opportunity to seal the victory moments later.
Alex Wall broke free and rounded Mott but Anthony Acheampong got back quickly and made a vital last ditch tackle.
Kinch flashed a spectacular long range effort beyond the far post before a second harsh booking for him resulted in him being dismissed four minutes from time.
Welling United: Mott, Fazakerley, Obersteller, Kinch, Franks, Acheampong, Gallagher (Hughes-Mason 86), Clarke, Fairweather-Johnson (Main 78), Lafayette, Healy. Unused substitutes: Williams, Flack, Turner.