If ever there were an example of the cruel nature of football, it came in the space of three second half minutes at AFC Wulfrunians. Trailing by 1-0 thanks to Lee Chilton’s tap in, Wulfrunians’ Jumaane Meggoe fired a shot which hit first the crossbar, bouncing back across the goalmouth and hitting the post before falling to safety.
Had the shot not defied the laws of physics and gone in, the home side would have been level in a game which they had enjoyed the upper hand. As it was, three minutes later at the other end Dan Westwood turned on the edge of the area and fired his first since signing for the club to put the visitors 2-0 up, a position they wouldn’t cede.
As it was, the early stages were all Wulfrunians. Mikey Nelson’s freekick on seven minutes had to be tipped over the bar by Khalsa keeper Sam Arnold and from the resulting corner, Jack Rowley headed just wide.
Carlo Franco – with his brother Angelo wearing the captain’s armband for the opposition – needed to block Rory Harris’s effort on ten minutes before on the break at the other end Josh Thomas saw his effort charged down in similar fashion.
Things calmed down, Khalsa dampening the Wulfrunian fires a tad, although Shawn Boothe needed to be at his defensive best to perfectly time a last ditch tackle in the penalty area to deny Nelson a straightforward chance on 26 minutes.
Just before the break, Nelson again had a good opportunity but the ex-Khalsa winger pulled his effort wide of the post.
You wondered whether the home side might regret their missed opportunities come the second half. And so it proved on 55 minutes when Jay Holdcroft lashed a cross from the right wing into the danger zone and Chilton got a touch while evading Phil McKerdy for his third of the season.
The goal put Khalsa’s tails up, Westwood’s effort a moment or so after the goal almost opened his account for the club and then Franco’s looping cross needed to be tipped over by Wulfs keeper Mason Springthorpe. Searching for that first goal of the season, Westwood had an effort chalked off for offside and then slotted a good chance into the sidenetting from a great surging run and cross by substitute Mensah Kinch.
Then, on 78 minutes came Meggoe’s double woodwork episode and three minutes later it was all over as Westwood – who never once stopped doing the things that make him a danger – doubled Khalsa’s lead and sealed the result.
Sporting Khalsa: Sam Arnold, Carlo Franco, Alex Melbourne, Shawn Boothe, Tes Robinson (captain), Alex Perry, Lee Chilton, Alex Woodhouse (Rico Taylor), Dan Westwood, Jay Holdcroft, Josh Thomas (Mensah Kinch). Subs not used: Dale Reaney, Jordan Hunt, Garfield Robinson.
Man-of-the-match: Shawn Boothe