by on 01/02/06 at 12:46 am

Walking out of the Mem. tonight I lost count of how many people said ‘What a game’….

What a scorcher!
As 5,966 Gasheads and O’s fans settled down to watch a Play-Off duel the oncoming events were virtually unpredictable.

A touchy-feely opening period saw lots of midfield hassling, closing down and tight passing, and Rovers kept posession well.

This showed, when on 14 minutes a ball slid through to Junior gave the Ghanain forward a one on one, and he kept his shot low only to see it saved by the Orient keeper- but the rebound left him with the open goal at his mercy- 1-0 Gas and a great start.

Rovers continued to play positive, passing football, which saw good link up play by the midfield an the front-line.
Richard Roy Walker held the ball up excellently, and Junior worked hard pressing the defenders with his pace.

In recent times The Gas have been graced by ever-improving performances by the now wing positioned Stewie Campbell- and his terrorizing form led to the Gas being awarded a penalty on the stroke of half time.

Junior stepped up to give the Gas a deserved 2-0 lead, but placed his penalty straight into the outstreched arms of the keeper; which meant the score at half time remained 1-0.

A somewhat deflated Rovers started the second half and had a bit of trouble getting their foot on the ball.
Buoyed by their penalty escape, a well organised, passing Leyton Orient side surged forward.

Their pressure lead to chance for striker Jabo Ibehre, who lashed the ball into the net from just inside the box.

Bewildered Rovers started off again, but still couldn’t summon the same football as they had been playing before the break.
Orient pounced on this hesitation again, and made it 2-1 (Ibehre) on 57 minutes after some hazardous Gas defending.

Now pretty peeved the Rovers finally kicked into gear, possibly summoned by a more intense crowd.
It took only 60 seconds for Rovers to level things up, when Craig Dizzy Disley looped a header over the stranded defence after a poor punch by the O’s keeper.

Back on level terms Rovers pressed for the lead, but found themselves behind again on 62 minutes, when Orient midfielder Simpson’s shot found a way to goal to make it 3-2.

Gobsmacked the Gas stepped things up more, and started to get a few more decisions from the referee, who had a fairly dismal game.
Our pressing finally broke the Leyton defence with a quarter of an hour to go, when Christian Swanny Edwards was rightly judged to have been leant on in the box after a dangerous corner from Campbell.

Richie Walker stepped up and showed Junior how it’s done by smashing the ball high into the middle of the net.

Both teams had chances to take the lead in the last 15 minutes but the best chance fell to Disley, who saw a well guided header go the wrong side of the post by a matter of fag-papers.

The final whistle went, and although Paul Trolls Trollope felt bewildered by his sides performance, the Gas faithful gave their side a hearty round of applause which was richly deserved- by both sides.

In a great advertisement of League 2 football Rovers will be disappointed not to have taken all three points, but there were plenty of positives to take from another fantastic night at the Memorial.

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