BY MARK DOIG
Wealdstone extended their lead at the top of the National League South with a hard earned win at Welling United but it was tough on the Wings.
After an entertaining, but goal-less first half, Wealdstone took a two goal lead before withstanding a late Welling come-back.
Aston Oxborough, on loan from Norwich City, made great saves early and late that were crucial in the Stones’ victory. He made a wonderful push around from an Adam Coombes header in the opening stages then Welling substitute Aaron Cosgrave was sent clean through in second half injury time but Oxborough stood up well and blocked the shot.
Soon after Coombes had been thwarted, the visitors had an opening when Ross Lafayette got in behind but blazed over. Bradley Goldberg shot straight at Oxborough after bringing it down superbly before the Stones’ keeper made another good save when tipping over Anthony Cook’s shot as Welling had much the better of the first period.
Theo Widdrington came agonisingly close to marking his excellent debut with a goal in the second half when his shot came back off the post but the Stones’ started to grow into the game and went ahead when Michael Phillips evaded poor marking to head home from a corner.
Their second goal followed soon after when Wealdstone were given the freedom of the left wing before crisp incisive passing sent Dennon Lewis away for an excellent finish.
Welling were given a lifeline with five minutes to spare when Coombes was pulled down in the penalty area. He slammed home the spot kick off the underside of the bar to set up a grandstand finish.
Nathan Green headed wide from a corner before Welling had their one final opportunity. Somehow, Jack Jebb kept the ball in on the bye-line and managed to find Coombes. His excellent cross-field ball and the pace of Aaron Cosgrave finally sprung the offside trap and the Wings substitute raced away with just the keeper to beat. Oxborough wasn’t to be beaten again and crowned his man of the match performance by blocking as Cosgrave attempted to slot it past him.
Welling United: Wilks, Rich-Baghuelou, Anderson, Widdrington (Jebb 80), Swaine, Okosieme, Cook, Agyemang, Goldberg (Cosgrave 71), Coombes, McCallum (Green 59). Subs not used: Rooney, Oyinsan.