Borough on the march thanks to Wilde

Adam Wilde was in fine form for Gosport Borough against Bideford
Adam Wilde was in fine form for Gosport Borough against Bideford
Lewis Fennemore. Picture: Keith Woodland

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Gosport Borough maintained their push for a Southern League premier division play-off place with a 2-0 victory over Bideford at Privett Park.

Two first-half goals from Adam Wilde did the damage as the home side made their visitors pay for some wastefulness in front of goal.

Gosport were unchanged to the side who drew 1-1 at Bashley on New Year’s Day.

The home side went close to an opening goal straight from kick-off when Sammy Igoe’s corner was met by Justin Bennett, who headed just wide of the post.

The experienced midfielder came in for some rough treatment as he battled for supremacy, but each time he thought he was fouled the referee waved play on.

On 15 minutes, Bideford put together a neat move that presented Shaun Downing with a glorious chance to open the scoring.

But with just Borough keeper Nathan Ashmore to beat, he pulled his effort across the target and wide of the post.

Still the Devon visitors looked the more likely side to break the deadlock, and only a timely interception by the impressive Sam Pearce denied both Downing and Kevin Squire chances to slide the ball past Ashmore and into the net.

Finally Borough stepped up the pressure, and visiting keeper Paul Hider had to be at his best to deny Igoe.

But on 35 minutes Hider was forced to pick the ball out of the back of his net.

A searching cross from Luke King was not cleared by the Bideford defence and Adam Wilde neatly lobbed the ball home from 10 yards.

Bennett was next to be roughed up by a no-nonsense visiting defence.

But Wilde made them pay with a delightful free-kick that crashed into the net off the inside of the post to give Borough a two-goal interval lead.

As the second half started, wasteful Bideford missed a chance to get back into the match when Squire spooned his shot wide from close range.

As play again switched in favour of the hosts, Wilde was only denied a hat-trick when his left-footed goal-bound shot took a deflection to spin wide.

Bennett, Tom Dunford and Sam Wilson all went close to extending the lead for the hosts, before Downing again wasted a chance to pull a goal back at the other end.

Bideford substitute James Richards was also found wanting in front of goal as he failed to make the most of an opportunity that came his way moments after being introduced to the action.

For the later stages, Borough were forced to defend their lead as Bideford stepped up the pressure.

But they survived in some comfort to extend their unbeaten run to 11 matches.

Gosport: Ashmore, King, Poate, Dunford, Molyneaux, Pearce, Igoe, Brown, Wilson, Bennett, Wilde. Subs: Martin, Ford, Smith, Lawton, Woodward.