Wishaw 1 Forth 1
Forth drew 1-1 with Wishaw at Beltane Park on Saturday, on a pitch which was a credit to the hosts considering the recent inclement weather. Wishaw took a deserved early lead through Kevinbarry Grant but his namesake David equalised for the Wanderers in the second half to ensure honours were even.
It was Wishaw who began the stronger and David Hamilton went close with a shot after 2 minutes before JC Hutchison in the Forth goal had to look lively to turn away a free kick from Chris Faulds with only 5 minutes on the clock. The Wanderers keeper was called into action again on 12 minutes saving from Kevinbarry Grant with Marc Howson clearing for a corner. However, the opening goal was only delayed by a minute and came from a swift break after a Forth attack had broken down. A ball out of the Wishaw defence evaded the Forth midfield allowing Faulds to advance on goal and although Hutchison blocked his shot Grant was following up to net the rebound.
It was no more than the home side deserved after their bright start and Nicky Moore had a chance 3 minutes later but shot high and wide. This seemed to spur the Wanderers into action and they began to get a foothold in the game. Firstly, Yamikani Misanjo just failed to cleanly connect with a driven Paul Cawley cross and then an excellent McKenzie through ball sent Misanjo in towards goal. The striker reached the ball before home keeper Harkness and shot towards goal before being flattened by the onrushing keeper but despite vociferous protests, a penalty wasn’t forthcoming and the ball was cleared. Craig Crawford was next to threaten for Forth, but his shot from a Cawley corner was blocked by the home defence. Half time arrived with the hosts maintaining their slender advantage.
The Wanderers made a change at the interval with David Grant replacing Marc Howson but again it was Wishaw who began the half in the ascendancy. Nicky Moore broke through on 48 minutes but shot wildly out the park before Moore setup Grant but he fired over. Moore went close again on 55 minutes but shot wide. Forth countered with an excellent McKenzie cross into the box which the home defence were happy to clear for a corner.
The visitors were not to be denied however and drew level on 57 minutes. An initial shot from Jamie McKenzie was blocked but the ball fell to Ian Mathers whose goal bound shot was well saved by Harkness in the Wishaw goal. The keeper was unable to hold the ball though and David Grant was first to react and rolled the ball into the empty net for his first goal of the season. Misanjo then narrowly failed to direct a header toward goal from a dangerous Harty cross before Harkness did well to hold a driven cross from Cawley.
At the other end, David Hamilton brought out a tremendous stop from Hutchison in the Forth goal, the keeper somehow managing to turn the close range shot away for a corner. Wishaw substitute John McStay then shot straight at Hutchsion before providing an inch perfect cross which was headed straight at the keeper when it seemed simpler to score. Tony Traynor was next to threaten for Forth, bursting through on goal but keeper Harkness got down well at his near post to turn the shot away for a corner. A Chris McGroarty corner found Martin Harty at the back post and his cushioned header found Craig Crawford who fired his shot over the bar.
It was end to end now and Hutchison did well to block with his legs after a great turn and shot from Nicky Moore before Chris McGroarty fired a free kick wide for Forth. McGroarty then released Martin Harty on 84 minutes but Harkness again did well to block the striker’s shot. Wishaw had a final couple of chances, Hutchison saving from Moore and a McStay shot deflecting off Ian Mathers and landing on the top of the net but there was no further scoring.
A game in which both sides created several good chances although the hosts may feel they did enough to merit all three points. Next up, Rossvale visit Kingshill Park, assuming the snow has finally cleared that is !
‘Mon the Forth
Forth team : Hutchison,Howson(Grant),McQuade,McKenzie(Canning),Mathers,Stevenson,Harty,