Wingate & Finchley took another vital step on their way to a play-off position push, after a 1-0 win against Worthing at the Maurice Rebak Stadium ensured all the spoils – although it should have been by a bigger margin. Tommy Tejan-Sie collected Ahmet Rifat’s looped pass to stride in on goal, but his toe-poke was pushed wide by Kieron Thorp. Steve Wales then struck wide from an angle after setting Luke Ifil’s deep cross.
Brannon O’Neil curled a free-kick just over from the inside left, before Rifat took aim from 30-yards forcing Thorp to scramble across and push away. Reece-Beckles Richards flashed a cross along the goalline which evaded Rob Laney on the stretch by inches. Following the break, Ifil tried his luck from distance with a spinning chip which had Thorp thinking, but the ball looped onto the roof of the net.
Rifat’s near-post header was blocked falling to Ifil, who skimmed his shot wide from 25-yards. Dan Summers looked to claw back some momentum, cutting in from the left flank, but was matched by an inspired Shane Gore diving low to his right. Claudiu Vilcu pulled off at the back-post from Wales’ corner, cutting inside and striking low towards the near-post which Beckles-Richards came close to turning home, if not for Thorp. Laney fired over from Vilcu’s knock-down, Beckles-Richards broke to the inside right striking wide from an angle.
The Blues found the breakthrough with nine minutes remaining. Wales’ pinpoint pass dropped in-between Thorp and Jack Cook who cluttered into each other, before Afolabi Obafemi made his mark off the bench latching onto possession and just about sliding the ball home. A result which sees Keith Rowland’s high-flyers head to Staines Town on Easter Monday still in the chasing pack at the top end of the table.
WingateTV post-game with Afolabi Obafemi: HERE
Report by Khalid Karimullah