A FIRST-HALF brace from Rhys Browne ensured Woking took three important points from their Vanarama National League match with FA Trophy finalists Gateshead at The Laithwaite Community Stadium last Saturday. 

The 2-1 victory alongside results elsewhere saw the Cards close the gap on third-placed Chesterfield to two points, but with a game in hand on the Derbyshire outfit.

Woking took the lead on three minutes when a pinpoint corner from skipper Josh Casey found an unmarked Browne, and his header beat the guests’ Filip Marschall from six yards. 

And the Cards were 2-0 up and coasting when Browne scored his second goal, this from the penalty spot, just eight minutes later, after Solomon Nwabuokei was scythed down in the visitors’ box. 

But in the second half, Gateshead provided more of a threat and halved the deficit when Stephen Wearne found Adam Campbell and the latter’s shot found the corner of Will Jaaskelainen’s goal. 

Woking boss Darren Sarll said: “We all felt the importance for Rhys and the team that he score that goal [the penalty, after he missed two against Barnet]. We’re going to be playing very shortly in eliminator games that are going to be potentially decided with penalties, so to have him score one prior to that is of benefit to us. 

“But it also shows the quality of the character and today should all be about the quality of the players' character – Rhys’ character in saying ‘I’m taking it’ [the penalty] and the character of the other players in order to see the game through and win it.”

For more on Woking FC, see the 27 April issue of the News & Mail.