On-song Williams gives Borough X factor

Rory Williams. Picture: Malcolm Wells
Rory Williams. Picture: Malcolm Wells
Former Pompey chairman Iain McInnes. Picture: Joe Pepler

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Rory Williams believes Gosport Borough can reach the play-offs – but they may come up short on some of boss Alex Pike’s grand ambitions.

The left-back capped a fine display with a glorious ball for Matt Paterson in the 2-0 win against Bishop’s Stortford as Borough recorded their first league win since New Year’s Day.

Justin Bennett opened the scoring with a poacher’s header inside 10 minutes for his 28th goal of the season, before Nathan Ashmore then saved a penalty with his legs early in the second period.

But Williams’ laser-like diagonal ball left defenders trailing as he picked out Paterson’s run before the striker crashed home the second 15 minutes from time to seal the points.

The deserved victory fired Borough right back into the play-off mix and Williams thinks it is a realistic target.

He said: ‘I think we can get in the play-offs – 100 per cent.

‘Alex wants to win the World Cup, the Olympics and the X Factor – he wants to win the lot.

‘I think he wants to be in the Premier League within five years.

‘But the play-offs are a realistic target.

‘People need to bear in mind, it’s only our second season in this league.

‘Are we ready as a club to go into the Conference premier? No comment!

‘But I don’t think there is any point in turning up every week unless you want to advance.

‘That’s the whole point of competitive sport. We need to go for it.’

Borough survived a first-half scare when Robbie Matthews was fortunate to avoid a red card after hauling back Donovan Simmonds but the Bishop’s Stortford striker stayed on his feet and then fired wide from a tight angle.

Ashmore then kept out Frankie Merrifield’s spot-kick after Tom Dunford’s foul before Borough should have put themselves out of sight with Steve Ramsey, Brett Poate and Paterson all missing presentable chances.

The nerves were settled when Williams delivered his Hollywood pass from just inside the opposition half and Paterson did the rest for his 19th goal of the season.

It might have been even more comfortable had Bennett’s 30-yard scorcher not been denied by the crossbar.

Williams said: ‘The ball to Pato was on and those are the ones you always go for.

‘They don’t always come off but it just went perfectly into his path and it was a good finish. We needed that second goal.

‘After the penalty we had three or four good chances.

‘Brett Poate had a volley and I don’t think they’ve found the ball yet.

‘With the run we’ve been on, we needed a win and a clean sheet.’

Pike, who handed a debut to the impressive Andy Robinson in midfield, said: ‘There were two critical points in the game.

‘In the first half, we were extremely lucky to have 11 men on the park when the lad went through on goal and Robbie was pulling his shirt.

‘The referee should have made a decision and he didn’t. Then the penalty save was also crucial.

‘But I thought it was a thoroughly professional performance. Our strikers made the difference again.’

gosport BOROUGH: Ashmore, Forbes, Matthews (Saez, 54), Poate, Williams, Smith, Robinson, Dunford (Wilde, 85), Ramsey, Paterson, Bennett (Wort, 85)