Callum Rose rescues Dorchester Town at the death

BY: Josh Donaldson – Dorset Echo Sport


CALLUM Rose was the hero of the hour for Dorchester Town as his last-gasp equaliser gave his side a replay against a much-improved Wimborne Town in the FA Cup first qualifying round at Cuthbury.

After a goalless, yet breathless, first half where there were chances aplenty for both sides, it took an hour for the game to really break free as Tom Blair received his marching orders for dissent after being booked earlier in the game.

Toby Holmes looked to have won the tie for the hosts against his former club, but, with everyone up for the final free-kick of the game, Rose was able to get his head onto the ball, looping it over a stranded Gerard Benfield to take the tie back to the Avenue on Tuesday night.

The home side made one change from the side who grabbed a point off Chesham United last time out – captain Scott Arnold returned in place of Jordan Lee.

The visitors made three changes with Neil Martin, Ross Carmichael in to bolster the defence. Blair was the other player to come in after missing out against Hartley Witney.

The intensity of the game was apparent early on as hard tackles thundered in from both sides.

It was the visitors with the next chance, Billy Lowes produced a low stinger that was well saved by Benfield.

Soon after, Luke Winsper after finding space in the box, but couldn’t control when called upon.

The chances kept coming, this time for the hosts. After good work from former Dorchester forward Holmes, Jack Lovell found himself with a sight of goal from six yards, but he leant back and blazed it over the bar.

Now, it was the turn of the visitors to test the nerves of their opponents as a silky run from Rose allowed him to crash a dipping shot onto the crossbar from 20-yards out.

Blair’s corner was met by Carmichael, and even though the Dorchester defender beat Benfield, he couldn’t get it past the man on the line.

Their next corner produced another chance with 10 minutes of the half to go but this time Rose could only head over under pressure.

It was then Wimborne’s turn to threaten from set-pieces. First, Maybury brought a save from Latham with a low free-kick before Lovell couldn’t connect from a corner when extremely well placed but the two sides went in goalless at half-time.

Lovell was at it again as the second half began as he got onto the end of a deflected pass, the winger was once again unable to find the opener as his strike was pounced on by loanee Latham.

On the hour mark, the visitors were down to 10.

Blair, already booked, reacted badly to a decision from the assistant referee and was sent off for dissent – a silly sending off from the winger that left his side fighting an uphill battle in the last half hour to stay in the FA Cup.

They were soon under pressure.

Holmes got onto a long pass that needed a last-ditch challenge from Rose to keep the scores level.

Holmes then found himself clear once more, this time Latham was out well to thwart the striker.

Soon after, Martin managed to block a Stokoe header with his back. It seemed like the game was going to be one-way traffic from then, but Stafie had a golden chance for the visitors.

With the goal gaping, he couldn’t find the pivotal touch after good work from Kyle Egan.

With the game entering its final stages, both sides looked tired after what had been an enthralling contest.

But, it was the hosts who finally broke the deadlock with three minutes to go.

Burbridge found his shot blocked by Rose, but it fell to the feet of Holmes, who slotted it through the legs of Latham to seemingly break Dorchester hearts.

But, there was one last twist. With the final kick of the game, Benfield misjudged the flight of the ball and Rose captialised, getting his head onto the ball and sending the loud travelling fans into raptures as they escaped with a replay.

Wimborne: Benfield, Tallack (Penny 82), Maybury, Davidson, Arnold, Kellaway, Stokoe (Francis 90), Young, T Holmes, Burbridge, Lovell

Subs not used: Walsh, Owen, Shepard, L Holmes

Dorchester: Latham, Egan, Martin, Rose, Carmichael (Bailey 73), Kite, Murray, Winsper (Panesar-Dower 60), Pope (Stafie 60), Lowes, Blair
Subs not used: Edgar, Thompson, Rodriguez

Referee: Tim Burley

Attendance: 523