Thame held to draw by Wootton

Ellis Hercules
Ellis Hercules

Thame United were held to their first league draw since September when they shared four goals with Wootton Bassett Town despite Conor McDonagh’s brace.

In a frenetic opening, the hosts went ahead inside a minute when a ball in from the right by Joe Hiscock evaded both defenders and attackers and went in off the far post with Matt Tapping in the Thame goal stranded.

The lead, however only lasted for a just a matter of minutes as Dan West did well to earn a corner and from the resulting cross, McDonagh was on hand at the far post to finish confidently.

The action continued to flow and with the game still less than 10 minutes old, Wootton went back ahead through Nathan Gamblin’s powerful effort from 20 yards.

United then pressed forward in search of an equaliser with McDonagh going close following a direct through ball from Tapping before West hit a 20-yard volley just wide following good link-up play with Luke Ricketts.

McDonagh then saw a deflected effort go wide for a corner before the equaliser arrived on 28 minutes. West did well to force an error in the Wootton defence and squared the ball to McDonagh, who rolled the ball in to an unguarded goal from the edge of the box for his seventh goal in three games.

With the game all square at half-time, United came out the stronger of the two sides in the second half and McDonagh fired over from 15 yards on 53 minutes.

Five minutes later and Dan Jones swung a corner into the box that Ellis Hercules flicked on at the near post, but West was unable to connect when well placed.

Shortly afterwards Luke Ricketts was presented with a chance following good play between McDonagh and West, but his effort from 20 yards went wide. Following the early pressure of the half, the home side gradually gained a foothold in the game and pressed United with Tapping saving well on a couple of occasions.

United thought they had taken the lead with 15 minutes to go. West was fouled on the edge of the box, and took a quick free-kick to McDonagh, who beat his marker and coolly side-footed the ball in to the far corner of the goal, only for the referee to order for the free-kick to be retaken.

That was the last meaningful goal mouth action of the game for United, although there was still time for McDonagh and Wootton captain Steve Yeardley to see red, and for Tapping to pull off a fine save low to his right.