Wingate & Finchley found momentum in the final third difficult to come by at Summers Lane, on a night in which a late Matt Blake strike was enough to take all the spoils for Leiston in a 1-0 defeat. Nathan Mavila intercepted on the halfway line and bombarded forward prior to laying off to Charley Barker, whose low, fizzing strike was well held by Marcus Garnham with four minutes on the clock.
Ola Williams’ cross from the right found Marc Charles-Smith, but his header back across goal was caught by Garnham six minutes later. Three minutes passed when the side from Suffolk had their first chance which saw Blake cushion a shot wide from inside six yards. The Blues almost took the lead on 16 minutes when Reece Beckles-Richards carved out an opening for Quentin Monville on the inside right, but his strike with clout was tipped away down low by Garnham on the stretch.
The visitors’ Byron Lawrence took aim from 25-yards which Shane Gore held onto with 19 minutes played. The last significant action of the first-half arrived in the 36th minute, when Mavila’s curled free-kick was pushed away by Garnham who sprung across. Three minutes following the restart, Blake latched onto possession on the inside left but could only fire wide across goal.
Keith Rowland’s men came within six-yards of taking the lead on 65 minutes. Williams’ perfectly-weighted cross from the right arrived to Beckles-Richards, but he was unable to connect properly with his header under pressure from Joe Jefford. The away side took the initiative and found a winner after 77 minutes, with Blake at the near-post latching onto a driven corner and poking inside the near-post. And despite the north Londoners efforts to find an equaliser, it was Blake who came close to his second at the other end but he could only volley a dipper across goal late on.
WingateTV: Nathan Mavila post Leiston: HERE
Report by Khalid Karimullah