High-flying Athletic share the spoils with Harefield

Table-topping Tring Athletic extended their unbeaten run by drawing 1-1 against a good Harefield side at The Grass Roots Stadium.

Monday, 15th September 2014, 10:35 am
Greg Deer levelled from the penalty spot. Picture (c) Colin Sturges

Athletic began brightly without creating any openings, however it was Harefield who took the lead from their first attacking move.

A corner was floated dangerously into the box, and defender Ryan Egan was on hand to bundle the ball into the goal from virtually under the bar.

Athletic pushed forward from the restart and Ryan McMahon saw his shot easily saved by visiting keeper Matt Elston-Bull.

The hosts continued to press and they netted an equaliser in the 21st minute, when Stewart King collected a pass in the area and was pulled back by a defender.

The assistant referee flagged for a foul, and Greg Deer stepped up in the absence of usual penalty taker Trevor Gibbs to decisively fire into the top of the net.

The game flowed from end to end and Harefield nearly scored again in the 37th minute, but for a fine save from home keeper Matt Evans.

The second half began with Athletic initially on the offensive, but it was Harefield who began to get the upper hand, with Mark Smith going close and then Michael Chennells missing a golden opportunity.

He was left totally unmarked in the area but his shot was brilliantly saved by Evans and then the loose ball was cleared off the line by some desperate defending.

Tring had another scare when captain Chris Salmon was relieved to see his header hit his own crossbar from a Harefield free-kick.

Evans saved well again in the 80th minute following a shot on the turn by Chennells, before Salmon came close to netting the winner with an overhead kick from the edge of the area – his effort hitting the underside of the bar and bouncing away to safety.