Roffey hold leaders Midhurst in top-of-the-table encounter
Fourth-placed Roffey welcomed SCFL Division One leaders Midhurst & Easebourne on Saturday and, not surprisingly, a very tight encounter ended in a 1-1 draw.
The Boars were without Jack Nourse, Hayden Neathey and James Pearse, who it is hoped will be back in a couple of weeks following his dislocated elbow, but welcomed back Jamie Wanstall.
The visitors made the better start and took the lead after only four minutes. A ball into the box found Josh Sheehan who finished clinically into the bottom corner.
Midhurst’s direct style and pressing meant Roffey took 20 minutes to get their passing game going. Josh Maher was inches away from equalising with a volley and Josh Neathey’s shot just cleared the crossbar.
Dan Pearse put Neathey through between two defenders, one of whom brought him down when he looked clean through, but the referee decided that the other defender may have been able to cover and only produced a yellow card.
Both teams were mainly limiting each other to crosses and long shots, and half-time came with no further scoring.
The second half continued in the same manner with no quarter asked or given and some wholehearted challenges from both sides.
Maher then got in behind the Midhurst centre halves and buried a ferocious left footer into the bottom corner before the keeper could move.
Roffey were on the front foot now and the visitors set up to frustrate. Despite no lack of effort, the Boars could not carve out any clear chances.
Neathey got into the box but went down under a defenders challenge but the referee rightly judged no offence had occurred.
Roffey still had to guard against the Stags’ lively forwards and Boars keeper Luis Correia showed excellent handling throughout.
The final whistle went with neither side having caused their opposing keepers enough alarm to deserve the three points.
Roffey now go into Tuesday’s match at home to Storrington knowing victory will put them back into second place.