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Wycombe Wanderers 1
Saturday 10th August 2002
Football League Division Two
The new season kicks-off at Notts County A late goal from Craig Faulconbridge was just enough to see Wanderers scrape a draw from this opening day encounter at Notts County. After County had taken the lead in the 58th minute it looked like a disappointing result until the ex-Wrexham man powered in to head home Darren Currie's cross from the left in the very last minute of normal time. Wycombe probably just about deserved a draw from a game between two very ordinary looking sides. However, Wycombe had Martin Taylor to thank for a point blank save to keep the score at 1-0 just moments before Faulconbridge's equaliser sparked celebrations amongst the 700 strong Wycombe contingent.
Taylor's inclusion was a major bonus for Wycombe at the end of a week where injury speculation had up to nine players out at one stage. On the day, Danny Senda and Paul McCarthy both returned into the defence and with Taylor between the sticks, Wanderers defence looked fairly stable. However, it was the home side who created the better openings in the first half. After just four minutes Danny Allsop saw his low shot from the right tipped wide by Taylor and the same player volleyed over on 19 minutes following a cross from the left. Meanwhile, Wanderers struggled to create chances. Rogers bouncing pass forced Stuart Garden to tip over on 14 minutes but the best effort of the half came on 37 minutes when Sean Devine's deep cross from the left saw Currie volley past the far post.
Half-time 0-0
Goalmouth action at Notts CountyDevine continued his link up play ten minutes into the second-half when his cross from the left saw Currie's effort at the near post tipped wide by County 'keeper Stuart Garden. Two minutes later Steve Brown's cross from the left saw Danny Bulman go close at the near post. However, Wycombe were caught with a sucker punch when County scored from their next attack. A corner was picked up by former Wanderer Mark Stallard and his ball to the right wing found Marcel Cas who with a clear route on goal made no mistake by firing the ball low past the oncoming Taylor.
County had further chance to extend their lead through Paul Bolland and Ian Baraclough before Lawrie Sanchez replaced Brown with Stuart Roberts. The introduction of the Welshman down the right wing inspired Wycombe's best spell of the game. On 76 minutes Currie delivered another ball from the left but Devine slashed the effort wide as he leant back trying to reach the ball. Roberts screwed a chance wide on 82 minutes as the ball came to him on the right side of goal and it looked like Wanderers chance of a point had gone.
Darren Currie, goal provider at Notts County In one last ditch effort to grab a point Sanchez threw on Roger Johnson as a makeshift forward but it was Taylor who Wycombe had to thank when be blocked out Cas from a similar position to where he scored his first goal. The save proved vital as Wycombe pushed forward again and when Currie delivered again it was Faulconbridge who made up for an overall quiet game by heading home from around six yards.
Final Score Notts County 1 Wycombe 1
Wycombe: Taylor, Senda, Vinnicombe, Rogers, McCarthy, Simpson, Currie, Bulman (sub 86 Johnson), Brown (sub 65 Roberts), Faulconbridge, Devine subs not used: Cook, Thomson, Talia
Yellow Cards: none
Notts County: Garden, Fenton, Baraclough, Ireland, Nicholson, Cas, Caskey, Bolland, Stone, Stallard, Allsopp subs not used: Mildenhall, Liburd, Brough, Holmes, Heffernan
Yellow Cards: Baraclough (foul 38)
Referee: M Warren (Walsall) Attendance: 6,012 (Wycombe 740)
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