First Team
National League Sat 20 January Meadowbank Stadium
Dorking Wanderers
  • Carter (43')

Match report by Zac Welshman

Marc White made three changes to the side that lost at Macclesfield last time out, with George Francomb, Tom Blair and Tony Craig all returning to the starting lineup, as Craig captained the side in place of the injured Barry Fuller. Alfie Rutherford also returned to the matchday squad for the first time after his brief loan spell at Weymouth.

Chances were at a premium in the cagey opening stages, but Wanderers found their first sight of goal just before the 10-minute mark with Seb Bowerman curling an effort wide from the edge of the box. Wanderers were handed an advantage in the 24th minute, as Gateshead’s Reagan Booty saw red following a rash challenge on Jason
Prior in the centre circle. White’s side capitalised on their numerical ascendancy straight away, hemming the visitors into their own half.

The pressure told for Gateshead in the 43rd minute as Josh Taylor found Charlie Carter in the box. Carter inched toward goal as Gateshead stood off, and he caught Gateshead’s Edward Beach out with a firm left-footed strike that the ‘keeper couldn’t stop from crossing the line.

The linesman’s flag denied Wanderers an extended half-time lead just minutes later, as Tom Blair’s cross from deep connected sweetly with Jason Prior’s left foot and flew into the goal, but the striker was adjudged to have been offside.

HT: 1-0

Contrary to much of the first half, the game came to life after the restart. A header from Blair nearly made it 2-0 just a minute after the break, before tempers began to flare. Wanderers were guilty of giving away a handful of free kicks in their own half, allowing Luke Hannant multiple efforts to find a target in the box. The Gateshead midfielder connected with both Louis Storey and Marcus Dinanga, but neither player could hit the target as Wanderers weathered the storm.

The visitors came closest just after the hour mark as Hannant played a short free-kick toward Connor McBride who struck a fierce effort that clipped the frame of the goal. Harrison Male had his first real save to make shortly after with Wanderers under the cosh, Hannant and McBride combined again to give the former a sight of goal, but his effort was routinely parried away by the Wanderers ‘keeper.

Despite a nervy performance, Wanderers had chances of their own in a frantic second half. Substitute Alfie Rutherford had an effort saved from the edge of the box in the 80th minute, with Jason Prior unable to finish off the
rebound. A lively Rutherford picked Beach’s pocket in stoppage time, laying a pass off to fellow substitute Jimmy Muitt but the Gateshead goalkeeper gratefully collected the resulting effort.

A resolute Wanderers performance was concluded after a further six breathless minutes of added time, with neither side unable to add to the scoreline despite further chances.

In his post-match interview, White expressed he was “delighted” with the result, which in term moved his team up to 17th. Two big away days at Dagenham & Redbridge and Boreham Wood are on the horizon this coming week.

FT: 1-0

Dorking Wanderers: (3-5-2) 1 Harrison Male, 37 George Francomb, 5 (19 Hollis – 53’) Tony Craig, 3 Bobby Joe Taylor, 30 Seb Bowerman, 4 Dan Pybus, 6 Niall McManus (10 Rutherford – 57’), 16 Charlie Carter, 29 Tom
Blair (7 Muitt – 70’), 17 Joe Taylor, 9 Jason Prior

Unused Subs: Kennedy, Gallagher

Goal(s): Carter 43’

Yellow Card(s): Craig 47’, McManus 54’, Hollis 65’

Gateshead: (3-5-2) 1 Beach, 5 Richardson, 6 Storey, 18 Grayson 11 Worman – 82’), 15 Hunter (30 Jobe – 45’), 3 Booty, 20 Hasani (26 Adan – 72’), 4 Whelan, 19 Hannat, 9 Dinanga, 21 McBride

Unused Subs: Evans, Thompson

Yellow Card(s): Richardson 78’

Red Card(s): Booty 24’

Referee: Aaron Farmer

Attendance: 1,738

Sponsors Man Of The Match: Josh Taylor