Tooley’s Take

Tooley’s Take

Phil Tooley takes a look at the game and its context  

Chesterfield 2 Boreham Wood 1 National League Match #12

This match always threatened to be X-Rated; thankfully, it was only Ex-Rated as former Boreham Wood striker Kabongo Tshimanga and 100+ times a Spireite Will Evans took centre stage. Plus, the fearsome fears and frequently frightening times of the nervous nineties didn’t rear their ugly heads, so no zombie Spireites exiting an horrific scene after a sickening end to the show. Pretty good afternoon all round, I’d say. 

Two up at the break with Tshimanga, described by his former boss Luke Garrard in his pre-match press conference as the best striker in the National League, at the heart of the Spireites’ scoring show. 

Felled by Nathan Ashmore (credit to him for his approach to the game and the supporters), the penalty was the third this season resulting from a foul on Kabby and the seventh in total for the Spireites. Danny Rowe’s 12-yarder was like a musical collaboration between Lulu and Queen, Boom Bang a Bang and Don’t Stop Me Now (ask a responsible adult). 

Act Two for Kabby was an Oscar contender. Rowe’s part in the build-up was enough to earn a best supporting player nomination, but the Gladiatorial star of the show took inspiration from Maximus Decimus Meridius and he unleashed hell, with a turn to shake off the surrounding Wood Army ahead of releasing a killer blow from the heart of opposition territory. Russell Crowe has nothing on Kinshasa’s finest, who now has bagged 10 goals in 13 appearances in league and cup. 

For comparative purposes, the last 20 goals a season man, Kristian Dennis, took 18 games to get to double figures, though back to back hat-tricks from Eoin Doyle in games seven and eight saw him reach ten (and 11) in only his eighth appearance in 2015/16. Jack Lester’s quickest to ten was 15 games in his first season with the club. Decent opening, Kabbs!

After the break, it was the turn of Evans to be the ex-on-the-pitch. Throughout, he defended with great heart and endeavour, but he was the centre of attention when a seemingly harmless head back from an Ashmore clearance almost crept in for a bizarre own goal, with the keeper picking up an injury in the process as he scrambled it off the line following what seemed to have been a lapse in concentration. 

Big Will then gave the home fans the heebee-jeebies when his long-ranger slipped through the palms of Scott Loach to pull one back, hitting the back of the net of the goal where he’d memorably saved Michael Cheek’s last gasp penalty in the bizarre 3-3 draw with Ebbsfleet United, Nathan Ashmore’s team of the day. Evans’ equaliser in that game marked his only Technique goal for Town, all his other goals were away, so one in one at our place for Boreham Wood, one in three seasons for us! You couldn’t script it. 

After that 67th minute scary moment, James Rowe’s team were bang on, performing solidly without ever looking likely to concede, though I’m sure every Spireite at the ground or listening in to 1866 Sport were consuming finger-nails at a rapid rate! 

The Ex-Rating was confirmed right at the death when Evans, who was never sent-off for Chesterfield, picked up a second yellow and had to saunter the full width of the pitch to exit stage left. 

Borehamwood, the town, is home of the famous Elstree Studios and has seen many famous films made there, including The Dam Busters and Indiana Jones & The Temple of Doom. Let’s get Bouncing in the Temple of Joy on Tuesday against Eastleigh to see if the team can extend their run to nine unbeaten at home which, if you take all competitions into consideration, would be a first at our current home. That’s All Folks. 

Phil’s Positive: The most home fans for any NL fixture at home, no bookings for a third straight game, eight unbeaten at The Technique and a win in the first match this season that the team has played a team above them in the table. Plus a more than acceptable performance, what’s not positive?

The Spireites’ next game is on Tuesday, October 26, at the Technique Stadium for a NL game with an Eastleigh side that’s seen Tom Whelan score in the last two games, kick-off 7.45pm  

Team v Boreham Wood (3-5-2 to start): Loach; Kerr, Gunning, Maguire; King, Oyeleke, Kellerman (McCourt 90), Mandeville, Miller (Whittle 35); Rowe (Payne 88), Tshimanga.  

Subs not used: Minter, Grimes 

Goals: Rowe (pen) 20, Tshimanga 43 (Chesterfield), Evans 67 (Boreham Wood)

Ref: Lewis Smith

Booked: Ashfield, Fyfield, Evans (two yellows, red on 90+5) (Boreham Wood)

Attendance: 5,477 (52 from Boreham Wood)