Blue Square Bet Premier
Tuesday 25 January 2011 - Twerton Park - kick off 7.45pm
|| Pentney, Jombati, Ruddick, Rollo (c), Webb, Harris (Murray 66), Connolly, Canham, Mohamed, Phillips (Jones 90), Watson (Hogg 74). subs not used: Robinson, Simpson.
|man of the match:
||Canham (52), Phillips (86)
||A Hendley (Halesowen), S Plane (Pershore), A Shilston
|league position: 13th
||next match: Cambridge Utd (H)
Report taken from
Scott Murray forced a last-gasp leveller to complete a famous Bath City comeback against league leaders AFC Wimbledon.
The substitute's driven cross deflected off a Dons defender's leg and into the net past Seb Brown to spark scenes of delirium in Twerton Park.
It was all City deserved after they produced a stunning second-half resurgence against a Wimbledon side who had looked in complete control at the break.
They led 2-0 after visiting captain Danny Kedwell converted a penalty, conceded by former Dons player Danny Webb, and Kirk Hudson applied a fantastic finish to a flowing move.
However, Marc Canham curled home a brilliant free-kick just after the break to inspire a spirited City resurgence which looked like being halted by man-of-the-match Brown, who denied Kaid Mohamed three times on the night and Adam Connolly once.
Lee Phillips was also unable to force the ball home from two yards but City finally got the equaliser their efforts deserved.
A slight hamstring strain for Gethin Jones forced Adie Britton to make one change to the team which won 3-0 at Altrincham last weekend, with Adie Harris replacing his fellow Welshman in the starting XI.
Wimbledon went into the game on the back of a 5-0 win over Southport, which took them back to the top of the table, and they almost got off to a flying start when a corner found Sam Hatton inside the opening 60 seconds but the defender headed wide from close range.
However, City were also buzzing after their weekend exploits and Mohamed drilled a dangerous ball across the six-yard box but none of his team-mates were on hand to take advantage.
Mohamed, who had been such a livewire at Altrincham, had started in equally threatening fashion and his lightning break teed up Adam Connolly but the midfielder sliced his shot wide from 20 yards.
Despite those scares, Wimbledon were looking very composed and they forced four consecutive corners, all delivered to the back post, but City stood up to them well. Another Mohamed burst then earned City their first corner of the evening but it also came to nothing.
The next flag-kick almost resulted in a goal, though, at the other end. The ball, this time, was played to the near post and flicked across goal where it fell invitingly for Fraser Franks. He controlled on his thigh before volleying at goal but City keeper Carl Pentney was perfectly placed to beat the shot away.
Wimbledon may have been dominating the set-piece count but City were holding their own in open play and, at the end of a long period of possession, Ben Watson put the ball in the net but Phillips had already been flagged offside in the build-up.
Only a superb save from Brown prevented Mohamed finding the back on the net moments later after the winger cut in from the left before unleashing a dipping shot from 25 yards, which was just about tipped over by the Dons keeper.
However, the hard work was undone in the 32nd minute when City gave away an unnecessary penalty. Luke Moore picked up the ball in midfield and, as the City defence parted before him, the winger was able to stroll into the box, where he was felled by a desperate lunge by Webb.
It was a clear penalty and Dons skipper Kedwell made no mistake from the spot, although Pentney did dive the right way.
The home defence again backed off Moore in the 40th minute and were relieved when, rather than pull the ball back to two awaiting strikers, he smashed a shot over the bar.
City were struggling a bit but they almost got back on level terms from the next attack, Mohamed again using his pace to break away on the left and drill in a low shot which Brown just about got enough on to divert wide of the far post.
However, Wimbledon were looking full of class and they produced a quality second goal on the stroke of half-time. They moved the ball around well, pulling the City defence left and right, before Sammy Moore lifted it through to Hudson who guided his shot expertly over the stranded Pentney.
Only an excellent clearance from underneath the bar prevented Kedwell making it 3-0 in the opening seconds of the second half as Wimbledon flew out of the traps.
However, City got themselves back in the game seven minutes after the break - and in real style too. James Mulley was adjudged to have handled the ball on the edge of the box and Canham stepped up to curl a beautiful free-kick into the net, with keeper Brown rooted to the spot.
Mohamed was vehemently appealing for a penalty a couple of minutes later after tumbling under pressure from Hatton but referee Andy Hendley was having none of it.
Wimbledon were rocking for the first time and Mohamed tried his luck with a curling shot from 20 yards but it went straight into the hands of keeper Brown.
And the scores should have been level on the 59th minute when Ben Watson fired in a low cross from the left which Lee Phillips couldn't quite get a touch on two yards from goal.
The ball had taken a slight deflection on the way through and, from the subsequent corner, Mohamed had a shot saved. They also went close from the next flag-kick, with Jombati's header just clearing the target.
City were now well on top and Wimbledon were forced to make a change, taking off goalscorer Hudson and sending on Ryan Jackson, but it could not stop the home momentum and Connolly forced another fine save from Brown.
Britton's first change saw the defensive Harris be replaced by Murray, while Wimbledon's second swap saw Rashid Yussuff replace Sammy Moore midway through the second period.
There was also a break while Watson received treatment on a calf injury - he had to be replaced by Lewis Hogg minutes later - and it seemed to take the wind out of City's sails, although Canham did work the keeper again with a low shot.
Webb and Hogg also needed treatment, with the latter briefly leaving the pitch with a cut following a clash of heads. However, he refused to stay off for long and was soon back in the fray.
His spirit was reflected by the rest of the team and they got their just rewards four minutes from time when they grabbed an equaliser. Murray's initial cross was blocked but his second one ricocheted off a Dons defender and into the net.
There was six minutes of injury-time but it was all City in those closing stages. However, Britton indicated he was happy with the point - and rightly so - when he took off Phillips and sent on defender Jones.
City had to survive a final scare when Kedwell raced clear down the right but his shot was blocked by Pentney's feet to secure a deserved draw.