Brace seals point for vis­i­tors af­ter Mag­pies bat­tle back

The Non-League Football Paper - - VANARAMA NATIONAL LEAGUE - By Daniel Dar­ling­ton STAR MAN: Jim Keller­mann (Alder­shot) ATT: 2,425 EN­TER­TAIN­MENT: ★★★★★ REF­EREE: Thomas Bra­mall 7/10

VER­DICT: A fan­tas­tic game which de­servedly ended hon­ours even. Alder­shot car­ried the greater threat in the first half but were more than matched in the sec­ond by Alan Devon­shire’s Mag­pies

MAIDEN­HEAD United and Alder­shot Town served up an ex­cel­lent ad­vert for National League foot­ball on NonLeague Day with two-goal Jim Keller­mann res­cu­ing a last-gasp point for Gary Wad­dock’s men.

The Mag­pies were look­ing for a re­sponse af­ter Tues­day night’s hor­ror show at Torquay United, and man­ager Alan Devon­shire will have been de­lighted by the per­for­mance, if not en­tirely sat­is­fied with the re­sult at York Road.

His part-time side once again showed tremen­dous char­ac­ter to bat­tle back from a 2-1 half-time deficit to take the lead through Harry Pritchard’s penalty with a few min­utes re­main­ing.

It looked as though they’d hold on for a fourth home win in a row, but, with the Shots pil­ing bod­ies for­ward and the clock tick­ing on into stop­page time, the ball fell kindly for Keller­mann on the edge of the box and he guided it into the back of Carl Pent­ney’s net off the post.

Manny Oyeleke and Harry Pritchard fired over as the two sides ex­changed pre­sentable chances early on, be­fore the vis­i­tors edged in front on 17 min­utes when Evans’ di­ag­o­nal ball for­ward was headed by Scott Ren­dell into the path of Keller­mann, who slot­ted past Pent­ney.

Their lead lasted all of 60 sec­onds be­fore be­ing can­celled out by Adrian Clifton’s well-taken strike; the mid­fielder turned striker los­ing his man be­fore lift­ing a lovely left-footed shot over the on­rush­ing Cole from Pritchard’s pass.

The Shots re­took the lead three min­utes be­fore half-time when the Mag­pies were opened up on the right and Fa­bien Robert crossed for Adam McDon­nell to head past Pent­ney from close range.

United might have been trail­ing at the break, but they weren’t out of the con­test by a long shot and they lev­elled in the 63rd minute when half-time sub­sti­tute Dean In­man rose

well to loop a back­ward header over Cole and into the net from Pritchard’s throw.

It looked like the Mag­pies had been pre­sented with all three points when In­man’s header struck a hand in the box and Pritchard thumped the ball low past Cole from the spot in the 87th minute.

But, willed on by a noisy, vo­cif­er­ous away end the Shots came again and, when Max Kil­man could only par­tially clear a cross, Keller­mann smashed the ball into the turf and in off the post from the edge of the box.

“We de­fended poorly,” said Devon­shire af­ter the game. “That’s why I made the change at half-time and I felt that in the sec­ond half we dom­i­nated. Once we got 3-2 up I couldn’t see them scor­ing.

“The ball ric­o­cheted and fell for him (Keller­mann) on the edge of the box. We should have done bet­ter, but I’m not go­ing to lay into them. We’ve got a 3-3 draw against a good side and maybe could have won it.”

Wad­dock re­flected: “We ended up chas­ing it when I thought we were in a fairly com­fort­able po­si­tion. You have to give great credit to Maiden­head, the way they con­tin­ued to play on the front foot and bat­tle away.

“But to get our­selves in a good po­si­tion and to then have to chase it , ev­ery­one will say that it’s good char­ac­ter from the play­ers to keep chas­ing, but I wanted to win it.”

PIC­TURE: Ian Mors­man

IT’S FRAN­TIC! Jim Keller­mann opens the scor­ing for the Shots while Harry Pritchard cel­e­brates, inset top, af­ter scor­ing Maiden­head’s third goal, inset bot­tom

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