Last-gasp Cameron Murray goal seals win for Dorchester at Basingstoke

BY: Neil Walton – Dorset Echo Sport (@EchosportNeil)


CAMERON Murray was the hero with a brilliant 93rd-minute goal as Dorchester came from behind to beat Basingstoke Town 2-1 in their Evo-Stik Southern Premier South clash at the Camrose Stadium.

In a rain-soaked match lacking in chances, Dorchester had goalkeeper Alhaji Sesay to thank for preserving parity before half-time, stooping to tip away a powerful Dan Bayliss header.

However, the Dragons made the breakthrough when Jack McKnight lobbed the keeper, only to see Aaron Rodriguez level two minutes later.

With both sides pushing for victory the Magpies punished Basingstoke on the counter, Murray speeding forward and finishing well to hand his side a precious three points, extending to six games their unbeaten streak against the Hampshire outfit.

Dorchester made two changes to the side that exited the City Security Services League Challenge Cup 4-2 on penalties after a 1-1 draw with Poole Town on Tuesday.

Harry Kite (unavailable) and Tom Blair (Achilles) were the enforced switches, resulting in Josh Bailey returning earlier than expected from osteopubis and winger Ben Morris making his maiden competitive start for the Magpies.

In rainy conditions at the Camrose, the game began at pace with the opening chance falling to the hosts.

Dangerous winger Sam Smart held play up and fed Dean Stow on the overlap, the right-back’s cross finding winger Zidan Akers, who saw his shot frantically blocked by the Dorchester defence.

From that block, Dorchester surged upfield and fashioned a chance for Rodriguez, whose deflected attempt span agonisingly behind.

Sam Deadfield cleared the resultant corner to Smart, playing him clean through, but a heavy touch allowed Sesay to gather.

Dorchester right-back Kyle Egan was booked for a heavy tackle on George Bennett before midfielder Billy Lowes was robbed of possession.

Sam Deadfield was the culprit and he supplied striker Sam Argent who also caused a deflection when his shot flew behind for a corner that the Magpies cleared.

Heavy conditions underfoot gave the players problems throughout and Akers then slipped just before pulling the trigger, much to the gratitude of the advancing Sesay.

Magpies’ skipper Neil Martin became the second player to be cautioned, kicking the ball away, before Argent blazed a superb Smart cross over as Basingstoke warmed to the task.

The Dragons continued to press and earned a corner when Dorchester blocked a fizzing Smart shot following Martin’s misjudgment of a bouncing ball.

George Bennett saw a header touched behind by Sesay before the Sierra Leone gloveman produced a brilliant fingertip save to deny a bullet header from Bayliss before half-time.

Basingstoke subbed Harry Philby for Shane Hollamby at the beginning of the half and the new man was booked within six minutes for bringing down Rodriguez having slipped in possession.

Steve Thompson’s men should have gone 1-0 up following a chance created by livewire Murray, who was intercepted by midfielder Dan Collier.

Ross Carmichael got up highest but headed the delivery inches wide from a corner when unmarked.

Midway through the half, Basingstoke took the lead when a deflected ball from Smart fed McKnight, the midfielder controlling coolly before dinking the ball over Sesay and just under the bar.

The Dragons’ lead lasted less than two minutes when Dorchester debutant Josh Williams played a clever through ball to Rodriguez, who fired home past Colm McAdden to rebalance the scoreline.

Both sides raided forward in search of a winner and tempers flared when Luke Winsper was booked for steaming through Argent, causing a skirmish.

With all three results still possible in the final 10 minutes, Sesay endured a nervy moment when a skidding shot from substitute Ben Wright forced the keeper into an awkward save.

In a thrilling crescendo, McAdden had to be alert to deny the tricky Williams before Murray scampered clear late on to deliver the killer finish and notch his fourth league goal this season.

Basingstoke: McAdden, Stow, Bennett, Collier, Philby (Hollamby 46), Bayliss, Smart (Bunting 72), McKnight, Argent, Deadfield, Akers (Wright 62). Subs not used: Orvis, Kennedy

Magpies: Sesay, Egan, Martin, Bailey, Carmichael, Winsper, Murray, Lowes (Griggs 78), Morris (C Thompson 63), Panesar-Dower (Williams 63), Rodriguez. Sub not used: Edgar

Attendance: 331