WIVENHOE TOWN 3 BROMLEY 2
Diadora Premier Division 15th February 1992
A game that had everything and resulted in a remarkable victory as the Dragons gained three vital points to boost their chances of escaping relegation. Despite being 3rd from bottom the ‘Hoe started brightly against the 8th placed visitors but quickly received two bookings to defenders Steve Wright and Colchester United loanee Martin Grainger issued by Referee Monk who, to say the least, was never the most popular Official amongst the good folk of Broad Lane. On 30 minutes we lost the influential Phil Coleman through injury while Bromley’s O’Hehir was carried off and taken to hospital with a badly gashed ankle soon afterwards. Grainger, who was still clearly suffering from “red mist” syndrome despite his 26th minute caution for his revenge foul on Denton, seemed determined to get himself sent off as in the 34th minute he closed in on Bromley’s Coates like a threshing machine approaching a field of wheat !. With the assassinated Coates lying in a crumpled heap off the pitch Grainger was sent packing with a straight red card and only reappeared in a Dragons shirt again when he had finally cooled down two months later !. Down to ten men and with striker Dave McCoy dropping to fill in at centre back, Wivenhoe still pushed forward and right on half time won a free kick just outside the penalty area. With goalkeeper Hayes still organising his defensive wall, Mitchell Springett’s quickly taken kick hit the crossbar and rebounded to another Col.Utd loanee Steve Restarick who reacted before any Bromley player to slot in the opening goal.
Four minutes after the break the visitors’ attempt at an offside trap failed dismally and Springett broke free down the right, beat the onrushing keeper and crossed from the bye line to the arriving Restarick who’s perfectly placed looping header beat the two covering defenders on the line for our second goal to send the Dragons supporters into gleeful celebration. Monk then upped the booking tally, first by cautioning Hamberger for protesting over the goal and then, within seconds of the restart, Morgan for a foul on Springett. With the Dragons now trying to hit on the counter attack the visitors started to put more pressure on us and from Hamberger’s 60th minute free kick Dave McCoy handled on the line and was promptly sent off with Lovell converting the resulting penalty past veteran keeper Gerry Warner. With McCoy being our 3rd centre half of the afternoon to depart and now down to nine men, Bromley took full advantage and within 60 seconds netted an equalizer as confusion at the back allowed Hewitt to race onto a long through ball to shoot past the advancing Warner.
Amazingly, as Bromley pushed forward in search of victory, Gary Harvey broke away in the 69th minute and crossed for Restarick who got just enough of a touch on the ball to deflect it wide of Hayes and into the corner of the net to record his second hat trick of the week to the delight of the Wivenhoe players and fans alike. What then followed was a siege of Alamo proportions as the visitors threw everything at us with shots and kitchen sinks raining down on our goal from all angles,however, a combination off good/desperate defending, outstanding goalkeeping and more than a touch of outrageous luck we saw out the remaining 21 minutes of normal time plus the extra 10 minutes Referee Monk decided to add on just to test how much control the Dragons fans behind the goal had over their bowels !.
TEAM; Gerry Warner, Steve Howe, Joff March, Steve Wright, Phil Coleman (Sub: Lee Hunter), Wayne Hannigan, Mitchell Springett, Gary Harvey, Dave McCoy, Martin Grainger. Non Playing Sub: Shaun Duffett.