Boo-boys silenced as Craig delivers
WYCOMBE boss Gareth Ainsworth claimed Steven Craig had delivered the perfect response to the boo-boys after finding himself centre of attention in the win over ten-man Dagenham & Redbridge.
Craig had received a few boos before kick-off after complaining in midweek about late payment of bonuses but he was soon back in the good books.
First the Dagenham defender Scott Doe was shown a red card for raising his hands to the Wycombe forward, with Craig then scoring a second-half penalty.
Max Kretzschmar doubled the lead with a strike ten minutes later to end Dagenham’s eight-game unbeaten run and keep Wycombe three points clear of the drop zone.
Ainsworth said:“Stevie’s been in the papers lately for reasons off the pitch and he stepped up, picked up the ball and slotted it home so obviously that’s great for him.
“The game hinges on the red card and it looks like luck is hopefully turning in our favour.
“The referee has probably made the right decision to send the player off. He’s grabbed Stevie round the head and you obviously can’t do that.
“I thought Stevie was entitled to go for the ball and if he’s caught the keeper it’s nothing malicious.”
Aaron Pierre, making his home debut on loan from Brentford, headed over after 11 minutes before Matt Bloomfield stung Chris Lewington’s hands 20 minutes later.
Dagenham & Redbridge were then reduced to ten men when Doe was shown a red card for raising his hands to the face of Craig following the Wycombe forward’s challenge on Lewington.
It was Craig who made the man advantage count two minutes after the break, firing home from the spot after Stuart Lewis was fouled by Brian Saah.
Kretzschmar doubled the lead for the Chairboys on 57 minutes with a thunderous strike following a neat lay-off from striker Matt McClure.
For Dagenham the defeat ended a fine run and left them six points shy of the play-off places and while manager Wayne Burnett had no issues with the sending off he insisted his player had been provoked.
“It’s not like Scott to get enraged like that. I haven’t got a problem with the sending off, Scott’s put his hands near his face and it’s a sending off, there’s nothing we can do about that,” he said.
“I’m disappointed by the way that Scott reacted.
“Was he head-butted? Yes he was, he’s got a bruise on the edge of his nose and Chris Lewington’s got a stud mark.”
STAR MAN SAM WOOD Wycom