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Dorking Wanderers 5-1 Dagenham & Redbridge FC

Vanarama National League

October 1st 2022

'McShane brace and debut Bowerman goal moves Wanderers up to tenth in five goal triumph...'

Ten man Dagenham and Redbridge couldn’t cope with a free flowing Wanderers side, who bounced back in style following last weeks disappointment at Scunthorpe. Marc White described his side as “phenomenal”, before and after Josh Walker’s red card, which came just on the stroke of half time.

James McShane’s five minute brace in the first half, accompanied by goals from Seb Bowerman, Adam Mekki and Ryan Seager, gave Dorking their highest scoring win since promotion into the National League. A Dan Lincoln own goal in the latter stages cancelled out what would've been Wanderers’ first clean sheet in three league games, but their third win in four, leaves plenty to be satisfied with.

The Daggers started the brighter side, Walker, who was in the thick of it throughout the first half, had the first chance of the game. After breaking down the left, Myles Weston floated a teasing cross into the Dagenham striker, who could only glance his header straight at Lincoln. Following this, the visitors continued to pressurise a sturdy Wanderers back three, who dealt with two dangerous long throws rather seamlessly.

Harry Ottaway ought to have put the hosts in the lead on the fifteen minute mark, with Wanderers first real effort of note. Some tidy footwork from McShane in midfield preceded a gorgeous clipped through ball to find Ottaway’s third man run, who, despite being one-on-one with the keeper, was denied by a strong Elliot Justham glove.

Dorking continued to look the more likely side, displaying some swift attacking sequences. Bobby-Joe Taylor’s clipped ball into McShane, who’s heavy knock down to Seager denied what would've been an exemplary ‘training ground goal’. It was Justham again who kept his side in it at 0-0.

Eventually, the pressure grew too strong for the Daggers, when McShane scored the first of his five minute brace, on the twenty eight minute mark. This time, Seager was the supplier, and McShane the beneficiary. Seager, who impressed all day with his hold up play and creativity, slid the ball through to McShane following some neat footwork, McShane’s composed finish took him up to nine goals for the season.

His tenth didn’t come long after, and came via a trademark Bobby-Joe marauding venture forward into the opposition's half. Taylor hit a sweet effort from outside the area, which, after cannoning off the post, found McShane, who’s clever feet sold two oncoming defenders, before leaving the keeper helpless with a calm finish, doubling the Wanderers advantage.

The way in which Dorking grew into the game, seemed largely due to the ever-growing presence of Josh Taylor and Niall McManus in midfield, who won a lot of their battles and were able to recycle possession efficiently throughout the game.

The Daggers’ loss of control was personified by Walker's dismissal, having picked up his first yellow mid-way through the first half for a late challenge on Nicky Wheeler, the Dagenham No7, on the stroke of half-time, left a high boot on Lincoln when challenging the keeper for a loose ball. It left the referee with little option but to pull out a second yellow.

Just before the referee whistled for half-time, Bowerman replaced Wheeler, who seemed to have picked up a knock, to make his Dorking debut, after joining the club ten days ago from Bracknell Town.

Half-time: Dorking Wanderers 2-0 Dagenham & Redbridge FC

The visitors came out in the early stages of the second half and seemed to be determined to try and get something from the game, creating some decent openings on the flanks, but ultimately no threatening actions towards goal. It was perhaps this over-committal of men forward which led to Dorking’s third on the fifty minute mark. Up stepped Seb Bowerman, with a tremendous debut goal. The winger picked the ball up just inside the visitors’ half, who allowed him space to progress, shortly after Bowerman took it upon himself to punish the time and space he was allowed, shifting it onto his right foot and curling an effort into the bottom corner to mark a dream debut.

Just five minutes later, the debutant picked out Mekki with a cross, and his fellow winger who had not long come off the bench glanced a header beyond the helpless Justham to mark Dorking’s complete control of the game. Seager then capped off the ten minute Wanderers scoring spree, finishing off a team move which encapsulated Dorking’s display. Following some more great midfield play, McShane hit a cross-field pass to Mekki, who found the overlapping Barry Fuller, his dart to the bye-line was followed by a delicately floated cross to the back post, there stood Ottaway, to knock down to Seager who was six yards out from an empty net.

Dan Gallagher tried his luck from distance on the seventy-minute mark, which just went over, in front of a Wanderers faithful in full voice, understandably. Unfortunately, they didn’t witness the clean sheet, as Lincoln, inadvertently directed a floated corner into his own net, late into proceedings. Following this, McShane had a glorious chance to take home the match ball, as he blazed an effort over from close range with most of the goal to aim at, following another team move which was very easy on the eye.

The win moves Dorking up to tenth, ahead of facing Yeovil Town next on Tuesday 4th October at 19:45. By contrast to Dorking’s recent run of form, Yeovil are without a win in their last six games.

Dom Bleackley

Dorking Wanderers: [3-5-2] 20 Dan Lincoln, 3 Bobby-Joe Taylor, 20 Dan Gallagher, 22 Barry Fuller, 7 Jimmy Muitt (15 Adam Mekki 51’), 6 Niall McManus, 24 Harry Ottaway, 17 Josh Taylor, 16 Nicky Wheeler (30 Seb Bowerman 43’), 11 James McShane, 9 Ryan Seager (18 Alfie Egan 65’)

Unused subs: 4 Sami El-Abd, 5 Ed Harris

Goals: James McShane 28’, 33’, Seb Bowerman 50’, Adam Mekki 55’, Ryan Seager 59’

Yellow Card: M. White 36'

Dagenham & Redbridge FC: [4-4-2] 1 Elliot Justham, 19 Sam Ling, 5 Manny Onariase, 22 Kamarl Grant (2 Josh Hare 46’), 3 Elliott Johnson, 16 Harry Phipps (8 Mo Sagaf 46’), 4 Dean Rance, 12 Matt Robinson, 11 Myles Weston, 9 Paul McCallum (25 Aaron Blair 54’), 7 Josh Walker

Unused subs: 40 Besart Topalloj, Omar Mussa

Yellow Cards: Josh Walker 26’ + 45+1’, Dean Rance 35’ Manny Onariase 42’, Sam Ling 71’

Referee: James Durkin

Attendance: 1536

Sponsors Man Of The match: Niall McManus

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