The ground entrance is through a turnstile (I think there are more than one but only 1 was open) just off the car park and next to the clubhouse. This takes you into the ground to the left of the car park end goal. I think the first thing that you notice about Wilks Park is that it is quite
compact, something I personally like in a football ground because it adds to the atmosphere. The second thing I noticed, apart from the left to right slope, was the fact that there are covered areas of various sizes and shapes on all four sides of the pitch. This is quite unusual at this level.
The main stand and seating area is to the right of the entrance and looks to seat around 100 people. Behind both goals are similar covered standing areas and behind the dugourts, to the left of the entrance, there is a covered area along with a tea bar and toilet facilities. A proper non-league ground in my opinion.
The home side, as you would expect from a team pushing to regain top spot, started the game the brighter of the two sides. The pace of their left-winger, in particular, was causing some concern for the Binfield backline. However, the visitors defence looked strong, well organised and difficult to break down. When they did break Binfield looked like they had the capability to cause Heath problems too.
The game continued to ebb and flow with the Heathens holding the balance of play but not being able to fashion any clear cut opportunities. That is until around about halfway through the half. For once the Binfield defence failed to properly clear a Flackwell attack and the ball was stabbed goal-wards beating the keeper and defenders. However, just before it crossed the line it was given a final helping hand by Harding who was, unfortunately, in an offside position. To be fair, it was an instinctive reaction from a striker and the offside call, although correct, was quite tight.
Ten minutes later it was Binfield who came very close to taking the lead with possibly the best effort of the half. Turning on the edge of the box, Johnson tried to curl the ball into the far corner but was denied by a good save from the home keeper. The game was defintiely hotting up and just a few minutes later a Flackwell attack ended with a shot striking the joint of post and bar with the keeper beaten.
Almost immediately a long ball from Binfield bounced awkwardly and caught out the home central defender (incidentally, I think this was the only mistake this player made in the entire game). This allowed Ferdinand to run through on goal and finish very calmly to make it 1-0 to Binfield. The goal was defintiely against the general run of play and Heath immediately set about redressing the balance.
With news that both Kidlington and Ascot were well ahead in their games, the home side needed to get the points. The equaliser wasn't long in coming and when it did, it was a great move. Binfield conceded a free kick on their right flank about 25 yards out. The ball was crossed to the back post where it was headed back across the goal for Tack to finish crisply. A nicely worked set-piece that looked very much like a training ground manoeuvre.
The goal was pretty much the last action of the first half and the teams left the field all-square. On the balance of play, Binfield would probably have been the happier at this point.
However, anyone expecting Heath to kick on from this point would have been disappointed. Binfield are a resilient side and they rolled up their sleeves and set about trying to get themselves back on level terms. This made for a very entertaining second half with Binfield trying to push forward as much as they could it meant that they were a little vulnerable to a Flackwell break.
However, as it happened, neither side was able to score again despite a number of good efforts from both teams.
The result sees Flackwell Heath return to the top of the table a point clear of Thatcham Town. Both Kidlington and Ascot had convincing wins to keep the gap the same. However, with Kidlington having three games in hand it makes for an enticing run-in especially as Flackwell and Kidlington have yet to play each other this season. Heath go to Yarnton Road at the end of March with The Greens set to visit Wilks Park in the penultimate game of the season. What a game that could be.
Flackwell Heath - @fhfc1907
Binfield - @binfieldfc