Wingate & Finchley picked up a valuable away point at Ilford in a game which was tough, mainly due to the horrendous bobbly playing surface. Chances were hard to come by in the first half as both sides defended resolutely, but Wingate who were looking the stronger team found it difficult to play their usual passing game as the ball bounced at erratic uncontrollable angles.
One flowing move that did come together started with a surging run from Joe O'Brien who then played a through ball to Marc Weatherstone who had broken down the right flank. He squared the ball inside to Chris Chase but his shot was well blocked by a last ditch sliding challenge.
At the other end Gavin King and Ahmet Rifat were both called upon to scramble away an attack by Ian Cooper who was in a dangerous position in front of goal.
The second half was livelier as the teams had adapted to the tricky conditions. Joe O'Brien sent two shots on target from 20 yards, but both were gathered confidently by home keeper Mark Parker. Kieran Street also tried form distance and he struck his shot fiercely, but again Parker was solid as he dived low to his left to make the save.
Tim Lees and Leon Nelson were brought on to add some creativity to the performance, and this had the desired effect. A Lees free kick was floated into the area and Ahmet Rifat won the header, but his effort glanced through straight to the keeper.
In the dying moments Lees then played a chip through ball to Dean Williams who was 6 yards from goal, however he lost his bearings and fired wildly over.
Wingate & Finchley: Gavin King, Marc Weatherston, Kieran Street, Craig Ellis, Bobby Aisien, Ahmet Rifat, Joe O'Brien, Marvin Samuel, Wayne Grant (Leon Nelson 80), Chris Chase (Dean Williams 62), Steve Velandia (Time Lees 77). Subs: Ola Williams, Anthony Limbrick.