Witney United
Wootton Bassett TownWBTFC
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Wootton Bassett Town Logo

WBTFC Scorers:
J Magani

Bassett Beaten Again by Late Saunders Strike

Marriots Stadium, 13th November 2004

Richie Saunders dealt Bassett another big blow as he struck with five minutes left to go to give Witney United a 2-1 victory.

A weakened Bassett side took the lead inside three minutes when John Magani finished off a great run, smashing the ball into the top corner past Sean Purcell after great work down the left by Geoff Swatton.

Stu Hemsley was then booked for Bassett on the quarter hour mark for a late foul on Tom Dingle.

Tom Messenger nearly gifted the equaliser to Witney in the 23rd minute as he sent a looping ball back to Ian Gill and Gill tipped wide.

A mistake by Steve Yeardley three minutes later gave Tom Smith a chance but his shot went just wide.

Bassett however had the better of the chances leading up to half time. In the 29th minute, Matt Bennett struck over from a Geoff Swatton reverse pass before Witney levelled up.

John McMahon connected with a deep free kick from Toby Fowler and McMahon's header looped over Gill who was caught off his line.

Six minutes before half time ex-Witney midfielder Steve Bunting beat Purcell but his shot rattled off the bar after Bunting received a cross from Chris Mills on the edge of the area which was meant to find the box.

On 44 minutes, a long punt from Ian Gill found Matt Bennett racing through but Purcell parried away Bennett's powerful strike.

Purcell was booked in stoppage time for dissent, and the Witney 'keeper was lucky not to receive his marching orders.

Things got physical in the second half with referee Robert Dunn making a meal of some decisions.

Bassett scorer John Magani should have received red for throwing a punch at Mitch Wyatt but both received yellows and then Tom Messenger was elbowed in the face and the referee failed to reach for his pocket.

Messenger was brought off injured because of this as Dave Tyler replaced him.

In the 73rd minute, McMahon was booked for Witney after pushing Steve Yeardley to the floor by his throat – another obvious red card offence.

A minute later, Mark King replaced Steve Bunting before Gill made a double save to deny Witney.

Gill parried a shot from Gary Wright only for Wyatt to head the ball towards goal and Gill brilliantly turned the ball over the crossbar.

Dunn's day in the middle went from bad to worse as he booked Andy Hallett for a challenge in which the Bassett defender won the ball before Ash Bradshaw replaced Magani.

Bassett paid the price for some poor defending five minutes from time as substitute Saunders struck – driving the ball into the bottom corner from fifteen yards out after Bassett failed to clear from a Witney corner.

Scoop's Man of the Match: Chris Mills – did a brilliant job at the back, looked comfortable on the ball and solid in the tackle all the while playing out of position.

Scoop Rating: 7/10 – A great performance but two more goals from set pieces cost Bassett. Were the better side on the day and should have beat poor opponents.

Credit: Stuart Smedley
Last modified on Tuesday 15th September 2020 at 10:02

Witney United
Wootton Bassett TownWBTFC
Witney United Logo
2 ‒ 1
Wootton Bassett Town Logo

WBTFC Scorers:
J Magani