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National League: Wealdstone 3 Tonbridge 1

PUBLISHED: 10:06 27 October 2019 | UPDATED: 10:06 27 October 2019

Wealdstone players celebrate (pic Mont Image Media)

Wealdstone players celebrate (pic Mont Image Media)

Archant

Wealdstone moved seven points clear at the top of the National League South after a hard-fought victory against Tonbridge Angels at The Vale on Saturday.

A first-half own goal from Christ Tiehi, accompanied by second-half goals from Billy Clifford and Dejon Noel-Williams cancelled out D'Sean Theobalds' penalty for the Angels.

The game began at a slow pace, although Tonbridge had a flurry of corners in the opening 10 minutes but struggled to threaten the leaders.

Then the Stones began to find their rhythm, with Dennon Lewis starting the onslaught after 15 minutes with a powerful left-footed strike which was saved by Jonathan Henly.

A minute later, the Stones were ahead as a great run by left-back Michee Efete ended with a dangerous low cross which cannoned off Tiehi into the back of the net.

The Stones became hungry after finding the opener and right-back Nick Arnold curled in a great low-cross searching for Danny Green which was cleared.

A free-kick for the away side was curled wide by Jack Rudoni before Stones centre-half Connor Stevens volleyed over Jerome Okimo's knockdown from Green's corner.

Wealdstone dominated possession and were creating chances, however they were struggling to find the target in the opening period.

Another example was from Arnold 10 minutes before the interval, as Lewis laid the ball from the right to the returning right-back and he curled high over the bar.

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Tonbridge could have taken advantage with a goal on the stroke of half-time as Rudoni's strike was saved by Aston Oxborough at the near post and the ball flicked up to Joseph Turner who headed wide.

Stones went into the break with a one-goal advantage, but Dean Brennan's men knew they would need to convert in the second half to secure all three points.

A great opportunity fell to the home side six minutes after the restart as Lewis' quick feet in the penalty area resulted in a foul on the Stones speedster.

Midfielder Clifford was handed the opportunity to convert from 12 yards, but his original penalty was parried by Henly straight back to Clifford, who lofted the ball high into the net with the outside of his boot.

The game could have been gone for struggling Tonbridge before Tom Derry was clumsily fouled by Okimo in the penalty box just before the hour.

It was game on suddenly as Theobalds penalty was driven low under Oxborough and into the bottom left corner with 29 minutes left on the clock.

Man of the Match Lewis then searched for a third Stones goal two minutes later and a fantastic driving run down the middle resulted in a right-footed hot which was unable to beat Henly.

The Angels hunted for an equaliser in the final 20 minutes, with the highlight of the pressure being Derry's free header from six yards out which was saved low by Oxborough.

Tonbridge were on the front foot, but lacked a clinical edge to their dominance of possession and the Stones comfortably held firm.

The nerves faded from the home fans in stoppage time when another dangerous run from Lewis ended with Noel-Williams drilling the ball across goal into the bottom corner.

A fantastic finish from Noel-Williams in the 91st minute opened the substitute's account for Wealdstone and capped off the Stones' 12th league win of the season in classy style.

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