The Worm turns for Sandridge after dramatic recovery
PUBLISHED: 10:51 02 February 2006 | UPDATED: 20:19 03 May 2010
Herts Senior County League Premier Division Wormley 3 Sandridge Rovers 4 Hadley 0 Sandridge Rovers 0 SANDRIDGE Rovers achieved a thrilling comeback against Wormley on Saturday in the Herts Senior County League. Stuart Love delivered a message to his mana
Herts Senior County League Premier Division Wormley 3 Sandridge Rovers 4 Hadley 0 Sandridge Rovers 0 SANDRIDGE Rovers achieved a thrilling comeback against Wormley on Saturday in the Herts Senior County League. Stuart Love delivered a message to his manager with a double strike but it was not all good news for Sandridge after a below par display. With Aaron Baker and Mitchell Heylock out injured Rovers found themselves 2-0 down to their hosts early on. Before half time Bob Fowler's side hit back with Chris Wickens heading home but soon after the break Wormley stretched their lead to 3-1. Sandridge needed a response and, when Wickens was fouled in the penalty area, Stuart Love stepped up to convert the spot kick. Ryan Denys, playing in midfield with Wickens and Love paired up front, put Sandridge level at 3-3 as he forced the ball home at the near post. Even at 3-1 down, Bob Fowler was confident his side would strike back and with eight minutes remaining Del Cleary set up Love who struck with a venomous left foot shot to snatch the three points. Fowler praised Love and the character of his side. He said: "I think Stuart Love had a message for me and he was very impressive. All the players know that as a team we did not play well but we came away with the three points. The character of the side is fantastic and if you have that you can fight back, but I would not want to see a performance like that again." Sandridge Rovers went into the game at Wormley after a 0-0 draw with Hadley on Wednesday, January 25. Fowler's team began well and shaded the first half but were denied by some spectacular goalkeeping as hosts Hadley kept the score at 0-0. Wickens had a header brilliantly kept out by star 'keeper Bethal and Ryan Denys and Stuart Love were also denied. In the second period both Baker and Heylock suffered injuries and Rovers now face a battle to get them fit for the crunch cup quarter final at Whitewebbs on Saturday week. Heylock suffered a knee injury after a bad challenge while Baker was taken off with a hamstring strain. Fowler said: "Aaron felt he was fit for the game with Wormley but I left him on the bench just to be on the safe side. Losing Mitchell was a massive blow to us as it was an awful tackle and he was running the show for us." Rovers struggled to cope without Baker's influence and Heylock's drive as Hadley took control but once the away side had settled down they got back on top and ended the game strongly. The manager felt his team had the better of the contest. He said: "Hadley are in a false position, they are strong, but we edged the game. They would say a draw was a fair result but we did well, especially once we adjusted to the injuries to Mitchell and Aaron." The Rovers defence was solid against Hadley, with inspirational midfielder Marc Andrews providing protection and young left back Danny Comber making a fine debut. Bob Fowler was impressed with the 18-year-old. He said: "I was very pleased with Danny, he had a fine debut. We defended well throughout the team." On Saturday Sandridge go to London Lions and Fowler is hoping for three points. He said: "London Lions have a nice pitch and it should suit us. We like to play football and that has been tough on some poor pitches, including our own recently. Hopefully we can take the win." Rovers then face a big quarter final clash in the Anagram Records Feeder League Trophy at Whitewebbs on Saturday, February 11.