Match Report by George Taylor
Marc White opted to make three changes to his starting XI on the back of an impressive victory away to Oxford City five days ago. Club captain Barry Fuller came back into the Dorking XI in place of Isaac Philpot, whilst Dan Gallagher departed for the incoming Dan Pybus. Also earning a spot in Marc’s side was Niall McManus after his goal on New Year’s Day, with Harry Ottaway rendered unavailable through injury.
Completing the substitutes bench was Jason Prior, returning to the match-day squad for the first time in two weeks.
Oldham came into today’s encounter on the back of an outstanding run of form on the road and looked to display such dominance through an early goal. Efforts from Will Sutton and Football League Journeyman James Norwood almost opened the scoring in the first half hour, with the latter nodding just wide of Harrison Male’s net.
As the first half ticked away, White’s men grew into the game, notably through substitute Bobby Joe-Taylor. The wing-back cut inside, and through the Oldham midfield, before sending a sizzling strike towards Mathew Hudson, forcing the opposition keeper into action.
Dorking continued to make headway on Hudson’s goal but were eventually punished just before the break. A poor attempt in clearing the danger from a corner allowed the ball to fall kindly at the feet of Mike Fondop, who made no mistake in flashing the ball in off the crossbar for Oldham’s opener.
Wanderers soon found themselves up the other end of the pitch in search of an equaliser and came close to doing so. An effort on the turn from McManus made Hudson come out and clamber for the ball, seconds before denying Carter from close range.
Marc White made one alteration after the interval, as Luke Moore made way for the prolific Jason Prior, offering the hosts a focal point up front.
Wanderers enjoyed a host of chances in front of Hudson’s goal as they looked to break down a resilient Oldham back-line. Bowerman and Carter both came close early on in the second half, followed by a wonder save from Hudson to deny Prior a certain goal.
With the game drawing to a close, Dorking’s final roll of the dice looked to have earned them a draw, only to be disallowed by the offside flag. A late attacking passage played in the ever-present Prior who successfully picked out Charlie Carter, with the latter unfortunately finding himself a yard offside.
Oldham eventually held on for all three points to record a fifth consecutive win away from home, leaving Dorking a point adrift from the drop zone in 19th. Next up for the Wanderers is a trip North, where Macclesfield await in the FA Trophy.
Dorking Wanderers: 1 Harrison Male, 4 Dan Pybus, 5 Tony Craig, 6 Niall McManus, 8 Matt Briggs (3 Bobby-Joe Taylor 28′), 16 Charlie Carter, 17 Josh Taylor, 18 Luke Moore (9 Jason Prior 46′), 19 Haydn Hollis (29 Tom Blair 69′), 22 Barry Fuller (C), 30 Seb Bowerman
Unused subs: 2 Isaac Philpot, 20 Dan Gallagher
Oldham Athletic: 13 Matt Hudson, 3 Mark Kitching, 4 Liam Hogan, 5 Shaun Hobson, 8 Josh Lundstram (19 Dan Gardner 62′), 9 Mike Fondop, 14 Nathan Sheron, 16 Charlie Raglan, 17 Harrison McGahey, 21 Will Sutton, 30 James Norwood (7 Kurt Willoughby 80′)
Unused subs: 11 Dan Ward, 20 Hallam Hope, 28 Ethan Walker
Referee: Ryan Atkin
Sponsors Man Of The Match: Charlie Carter