Billingham Town Football Club
Town deservedly earned a point on a damp Tuesday Night on Tyneside. The last five minutes had more twists and turns than an Alfred Hitchcock Thriller. Whichever team you supported, one went through all the emotions. For Town it was the possibility of victory, seconds later defeat and then the reality of a draw.... All in the space of three minutes....And yet there was still time for Whickham to steal the points but that would have been incredibly harsh on Town. Billingham were adequate in the first half and as expected, Whickham were organised, physical and content with their one goal lead. An excellent second half performance from Town improved the game as a spectacle. There was a bit of needle on the pitch, reasons that appeared to be unclear but on reflection, both sides should be happy with a point.
Barry Oliver made one change to the line up that drew against Tow Law. With Gary Redman away on holiday, Clayton MacDonald slotted into the right back role. Ashley Lavan, Yasonama Bodri and Dan Rowbotham were added to the substitutes bench. John Maddison has left the club by mutual consent and we wish him well for the future.
Whickham started the brighter of the two sides. Town had Robbie Stockburn to thank with a point blank save after just two minutes. Chad Collins looked to be offside but the linesman kept his flag down and the forward raced away to shoot straight at the keeper. Town didn't heed the warning and fell behind on ten minutes. Mark Fitzpatrick released his namesake David Fitzpatrick and his low strike found the bottom corner.
Billingham Towns best chances were both from long range. Daniel Lambert dragged wide from twenty yards and the outstanding Jamie Davis shot straight at Alex Curran after a driving run from midfield. The home side missed a golden opportunity before half time to double their lead. Kallum Broadhead linked up with M. Fitzpatrick who then layed the ball off for his brother but he blazed over the crossbar from close range.
HT Whickham 1 Billingham Town 0
The second half started like the first with the home side on the offensive. Stockburn did well to divert the ball away after more good work from D.Fitzpatrick. Some fine trickery on the left from Broadhead gave Collins a half chance but headed wide. Town were now playing with more conviction and the equaliser came after M.Fitzpatrick was hounded off the ball. Chris Dickinson released Luke Hogan and the winger was crudely upended inside the sixteen yard box. Up stepped HUTCHINSON who sent Curran the wrong way. Towns tails were up and a minute later, Lambert shot wide from an acute angle.
Referee, Tom Chambers issued several yellow cards as the game entered a critical stage. MacDonald joined Stephen Oakley in the book and Andrew Brown was cautioned for Whickham. Then the rollercoaster emotions took hold. Hutchinson had a great chance to win the game but denied by Curran and straight back down the other end, Town failed to clear their lines and substitute, Joe Mole bundled the ball into the bottom corner. The Whickham bench were in raptures, the game seemingly won. However, this Town team has character and the blues were given a free kick deep into added time. Lambert hit a superb ball that ended in the back of the net and cue pandemonium from the bench and Billingham Town supporters. Even then their was still time for Whickham to knick it but a last gasp tackle by Mark Dixon saved the day. A good point against a robust side and Town now move onto Saturday for our first visit to Blyth Town.
FT Whickham 2 Billingham Town 2
David Fitzpatrick (10)
Joe Mole (90)
(42) Craig Hutchinson
(92) Craig Hutchinson