Winchester City 2-2 Sholing

Scorers : Bentley 42 (pen), Jones 67  /  Dan Mason 24, Conor Whiteley 85

Date: Tuesday 26 July 2022, 7:45pm – Pre-Season Friendly

Venue:  Charters Community Stadium

Sholing players used : Trialist GK, Ryan Cluett, Dean Frampton, Byron Mason ©, Owen Roundell,  Dom Panesar-Dower, Rob Nicholls, Sami Makhloufi, Dan Mason, Lee Wort, Conor Whiteley, Jake Cope, Josh Batt, Stu Green, Brad Targett, Rob Flooks, Charlie Wagstaffe, Macca Hare, Trialist

A competitive pre-season friendly saw a sending off, some great saves and the Boatmen grab a late equaliser.

After their original opponents pulled out, Sholing stepped in at the last minute to face Winchester City, who will be playing in the league above us this season.  Gos, Marv & Miller were unavailable & several players had a prior community engagement meaning they could only play the first 45.

Was a cagey opening 10 mins on not the best of surfaces, but on 16 mins, Byron Mason met a freekick with a powerful header that looked a goal all the way until the Winchester keeper pulled off a terrific save to claw it out the top corner.  A scramble followed in the home side's penalty area and Jake Cope just failed to connect with a cross.

The trialist in goal for us had a moment, but former Boatmen, Claudio Herbert, put his effort off target of the gaping goal. We were cutting Winchester open down the left and on 24 mins, took the lead.  Ryan Cluett's left sided corner was met by Rob Flooks, whose header crashed against the underside of the bar, back into play where DAN MASON got to the ball ahead of defenders to knock home.

Claudio had another chance to score for his new side, but Byron Mason was alert to clear his effort away from near the line.  Sholing continued to link up well between midfield and attack and created a good chance on 35 mins when Dan Mason held the ball up in the box, laid it off to the arriving Conor Whiteley, who was denied on the angle by another good save. Sholing were on top, but Winchester equalised on 42 mins when a penalty was awarded & Bentley fired it in.  HT 1-1

Multiple changes for Sholing for the restart, including Brad Targett who was quickly involved, racing down the right and cutting the ball back for Whiteley, whose shot inside the area, deflected off a defender and narrowly wide.  On the hour mark, Sami Makhloufi's freekick found Rob Flooks at the back stick, but his diving header was into the side netting.

A trialist for Sholing on the left wing clattered into a Winchester player, causing some handbags and a lengthy stoppage. The referee sent him off, as is his right, deciding not to allow Dave Diaper to sub him off, as is normally the way in pre-season friendlies at our level.  

Down to 10 men and then a minute later, behind, when Jones low shot from distance, went through Macca Hare in goal. The 17 year old keeper had a difficult few mins, airshotting a backpass and getting stick from some home fans.  However, that turned to applause when Hill's dipping effort from 20 yards was superbly tipped over the bar by Macca. 

With a man advantage, Winchester dominated possession, but were then reduced to 10 men themselves when a player went off injured and they had no further subs available.  Sholing came back into it and scored on 85 mins when Stu Green stood up a cross into the 6 yard box and CONOR WHITELEY stretched to make contact and knock the ball high into the net. 

The last action of the game saw Jones hit a shot from outside the area that looked destined for the postage stamp, until Macca Hare pulled off an even better save than his previous one, to somehow arch his body and tip the ball over the bar.  FT 2-2

Next Game : Brockenhurst v Sholing - Saturday 30 July 3pm