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Braintree Town 2-3 Welling United
DEPLETED Welling United showed their mettle with an outstanding performance at third placed Braintree.
Jamie Day replaced suspended Jake Gallagher and Loick Pires started instead of the injured Ross Lafayette.
After Braintree had enjoyed a bright start Welling threatened with their first foray as Joe Healy's powerful shot was headed away bravely by Dean Wells.
Day then put in an audacious effort that went narrowly wide after Nathan McDonald punched out a cross unconvincingly under pressure from Kurtis Guthrie.
Jordan Cox shot over first time when Jack Obersteller, at full stretch, could only half clear a cross into his path.
Charlie Strutton should have put the Irons ahead but fired over from 12 yards after Cox flicked on James Mulley's through ball. Then Another Cox flick put Dan Sparkes away but his shot flew wide of the near post.
Whilst Braintree were enjoying the better of the game, there was certainly an element of doubt when they opened the scoring through Strutton who appeared well offside.
Showing the spirit which has got them where they are, Welling came back and McDonald did well to save a Day free kick before the Wings player manager was given a second opportunity.
Loick Pires was shoved over unceremoniously on the edge of the penalty area and Day's free kick over the wall beat McDonald all ends up.
Alex Dyer was cautioned for dissent and Cox soon followed him into the book for a wild foul on Fraser Franks.
Early in the second half Obersteller and Joe Healy combined to give Pires a shot that was deflected wide for a corner.
Loui Fazakerley sprinted away on another Welling break but shot wide of the near post.
Strutton flicked on a launch forward but Sparkes shot wide and Cox hit a shot from a tight angle that Butcher did well to hold,
Guthrie created the opening goal on 71 minutes with a low cross that Healy stepped over for Clarke to finish at the far post.
Pires was unfortunate to be booked when he appeared to have been bundled over then brilliant control and hold up play by Guthrie gave Fazakerley the chance to fire in a low cross that was begging for someone to finish.
Welling's third goal was very similar to their second. Brilliant work by Guthrie gave himself room to cross. This time Clarke dummied to wrong foot the defence and Dyer came in with the finish.
An all out assault on the Welling goal was repelled by the outstanding Franks and Baily Cargill until Cox fired home with two minutes remaining.
One last chance came the Irons' way but Cox was unable to finish a deep free kick from a tight angle.
Welling United: Butcher, Fazakerley, Jack Obersteller, Day, Franks. Cargill, Dyer, Clarke, Guthrie, Pires, Healy. Unused substitutes:Turner, Hughes-Mason, Cornes, Griffin.
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