Tisdale is not sure about the play-offs
PAUL Tisdale shot down suggestions his Exeter side are back in the playoff race after coming from behind to put a dent in Wimbledon’s top-seven hopes.
Adebayo Akinfenwa fired the Dons into a fourth-minute lead but the visitors were reduced to ten men midway through the first half when Dannie Bulman saw red.
Tom Nichols lashed home an equaliser after the break before converting from the spot after Clinton Morrison was tripped by Dave Winfield.
David Wheeler put Exeter 3-1 up but they suffered a nervous final few minutes after keeper James Hamon put the ball into his own net.
The win lifts Exeter to within six points of the play-offs but manager Tisdale refuses to get carried away.
He said: “We have contrived in the last few months to put ourselves out of the playoff hunt by not winning enough games.
“By winning games over the next month that horizon might change. But at the moment we are not close to that situation so it is not something we are talking about.We can only go to the next game and do our best to win it.
“It was a very pleasing win.We scored three goals, had plenty of shots and chances and we could have won by more. It was an anxious final few minutes but we saw it through.”
Akinfenwa broke the deadlock after lashing home a stunning volley for his 14th goal of the season.
But Exeter staged a spirited response and Nichols watched in frustration as his deflected shot clipped the top of the crossbar.
The Grecians striker was denied thanks to a smart save from Joe McDonnell after he nipped in front of Dons defender Jack Smith.
Nichols fired an equaliser into the bottom corner in the 54th minute and then kept his cool to send McDonnell the wrong way from the spot. Wheeler tapped in Nichols’ cross to put Exeter in control and Hamon was left red-faced after Adedeji Oshilaja’s header hit the post and trickled over the line off the keeper’s foot.
Dons boss Neal Ardley said: “We had a good start but the sending off has killed us. I haven’t seen it but if he has gone in twofooted then he deserves to go and I have got no complaints.
“Dannie Bulman will be disappointed that he has cost the team. I thought the penalty was soft.
“Clinton Morrison is an experienced player and he knows he has bought that.
“He wasn’t reaching the ball, felt the slightest bit of contact and went down. It is hard to have a sending off and a penalty against you and I was disappointed with the referee.
“That said we didn’t play with enough nous in our defending.”
STAR MAN LIAM SERCO