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Marlow frustrated on home soil
10:25am Wednesday 17th October 2012 in Local Sport
TOP-of- the- table Marlow were held by Thame United in a frustrating 2-2 draw last night that saw one red card and both managers involved in touchline quarrel.
On a cold night, it wasn't just the weather that had an unpleasant feel to it as the home side failed to fire up, writes Sam Goold Knibbs.
Mark Bartley’s men will rue a handful of chances as the Blues appeared to lack in the final third to clinch a winner, and put some distance between them and the chasing pack.
Thame defended well and were able to claw back a goal for their share of the points in a game that was dogged by questionable refereeing decisions, and which failed to get going. The home side appeared the stronger side in the first-half, which lacked many goal scoring chances. However, it was the visitors who claimed the first.
On the 23rd minute, Luke Ricketts slotted a pass through to Niall Hodgkins, who seemed to be in an offside position in the centre, for a one-on-one with Jorden Eggleton. The striker picked his spot and slipped it passed the keeper.
Marcus Richardson was playing the target man up top, and he must have thought his time had come when he controlled the ball in the box from a deflected shot.
It wasn't to be as Stuart Barr made a sliding tackle to swipe the ball away from the number 9.
But Barltey’s men retaliated soon after when Richard Witt flicked it past three players and in to space to produce a pin point pass across the field to Jamie Piercy.
Piercy still had plenty to from outside the box, as he cut it back and hit it low and hard into the near corner.
Marlow seemed to get into their stride, and it was Richardson in the centre of the action. He may claim it as a pass, but the striker appeared to shoot and when the ball swerved wide Piercy was on the end of it to slide in his second of the game on the stroke of half-time. Unlike the first period, Thame looked brighter.
Eggleton was called into action early when the defence failed to deal with a cross. The Marlow number one produced a save on the line to deny Ricketts.
But it was set-pieces that proved the Buckinghamshire’s side downfall.
When the ball wasn't cleared, Ben Gray was the first to have his shot denied by blue shirts in the box, Barr was second, and when the ball finally fell to Hodgkins he crashed the ball into to the net to grab his second.
When Marlow’s Adam Cashin - Murray slid in on Dan West, both managers began contesting the tackle and both received a talking to by the official; Cashin- Murray received a yellow.
As time pressed on, United held tight as Marlow began to look for the winner - Keeper Lee Farrow proved too much with some acrobatic saves.
Ben Gladwin was denied when he squeezed out a shot on the 65th minute, whilst Marcus Mealing, who was subbed on half way through the second period, was also stopped.
Piercy was looking for his hat-trick when he volleyed a free-kick goalward, but Farrow was able to tip it round the post. Frustration was all over the Blue faces, and when Gladwin was sent off with a double yellow for dissent on the 81st minute, it was all over. Marlow will hope to put this performance behind them, and now travel to Ardley United on Saturday.
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