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Match Reports

Report | Cheltenham 2-2 Wednesday

29 March 2023

Match Reports

Report | Cheltenham 2-2 Wednesday

29 March 2023

Wednesday forged a fine comeback to earn a 2-2 draw in a League One thriller played in torrential rain at Cheltenham.

The Owls were under the cosh and 2-0 down midway through the second half following quickfire Aidan Keena and Alfie May goals.

But Darren Moore’s men recovered to stun the Robins and might have won it right at the last when Will Vaulks hit the woodwork after Aden Flint and Lee Gregory had levelled the score.

The points were shared but Wednesday’s promotion ambitions stirred into life after back-to-back defeats for the first time this season.


Challenging conditions for much of the evening failed to undermine an all-action encounter, with a total of 34 shots from both sides.

Moore elected to recall David Stockdale, who was soon in the thick of things, diving acrobatically to push a sweet May hit from distance wide.

The Robins’ dangerman thrashed a volley just past the post before Wednesday settled into the contest and enjoyed long bouts of possession punctuated by a flurry of corners.

Cheltenham, though, looked dangerous when venturing into the final third, as evidenced 20 minutes in when Stockdale had to spring across his goal to keep out a Keena snapshot.


May brought out the best of Stockdale moments later from a curling drive on the angle but Wednesday responded with a Barry Bannan threaded pass in the box that saw a handball appeal against Caleb Taylor waved away.

Bannan had Luke Southwood concerned with a dipping free kick that bent off target, then the Cheltenham keeper superbly tipped a Vaulks measured effort from 25 yards over the top to close a frantic first half.

The driving rain subsided for the second period but not the talking points as Southwood stopped a Michael Smith header from a terrific Reece James cross.

Back came the hosts and James hooked clear after a mini scramble in the area but Cheltenham broke the deadlock on 62 minutes.


Will Ferry delivered a dangerous cross from the left that deflected into the path of Keena, who swept past Stockdale into the roof of the net.

It went from bad to worse for the Owls eight minutes later when Taylor Perry unleashed from range and Stockdale saved well but May was on hand to slot the rebound in.

Then came the comeback and the deficit was halved on 76 minutes. Bannan sent over an inviting set piece and Flint climbed high to bury a downward header past Southwood.

That set up a grandstand finish and it was all Wednesday - Gregory smashed over the crossbar after creating space in the area before substitute Mallik Wilks glanced a James feed wide.


But the late pressure paid dividends as Wednesday fashioned what could prove a crucial equaliser.

Smith motored down the right and put an expert ball right into the corridor of uncertainty, where Gregory advanced to stab home.

Still there was time for two more chances as Wednesday piled forward – first Dennis Adeniran lifted over from 10 yards before Vaulks smashed a long-ranger against the post that proved the final act of a pulsating end-to-end clash.

Wednesday: Stockdale, Hunt (Adeniran 90), Iorfa (Flint 64), Palmer, James, Johnson, Vaulks, Bannan, Bakinson (Wilks 73), Gregory, Smith

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