Sometimes, you just have to be honest and say “how the hell did we win that?” probably our worst performance of the season, albeit missing a few players, but nicking the win with pretty much the last kick of the game, against a Wickham Market side whose excellent showing belied their league position.

A crowd of 79, many sporting the new Henley Hats, braved the cold and wind to cheer their sides on. But for the first 15 minutes it was only the visiting supporters who had anything to cheer, as an organised and determined Wickham, aided by the wind, pinned Henley back and forced error after error, but failed to find a finish to capitalise on their initial dominance. Henley did find a way back into the game and should have taken the lead but Watling blazed high from close range, before Bruce hit the base of the post with a freekick after 15 minutes. Shortly after Liam Ablitt saw his shot well saved by Bolsover. Encouraged by their resilience, Wickham took the lead after 30 minutes, their initial effort coming back off the post, but Dyer was on hand to blast home the rebound from close range for 0-1.

Henley had a positive spell for the remainder of the half, but couldn’t find a finish, George and Liam Ablitt and Bruce all failing to hit the target, when they would normally take these chances. Leaving Henley 0-1 at the break, when they could easily have been 3-1 up.

Henley looked little better after the break, as Wickham battled for everything and applied the pressure. But from 60 minutes on, things suddenly changed, George Ablitt sinbinned for his comments to Mr Skaja saw the Hens reduced to 10 men. But on 62 minutes Storey rose highest to head home the equaliser from a Bruce corner for 1-1. Within 30 seconds it was 2-1, Liam Ablitt winning the ball on halfway, breaking forward before picking out the run of Cole, who fired home.

On 75 minutes, Bruce saw his shot saved, but Wickham went straight up the other end to equalise, Gosling finding the net at the back post following a freekick for 2-2, nothing more than the Wickham performance deserved. Henley were grateful for keeper Spurling, tipping over a freekick and making a good one on one stop, Wickham also hit the post. But, as so many times before, this Henley side doesn’t quit, their perseverance finally rewarded in the 93rd minute, Liam Ablitt sending in a vicious in-swinging corner which an under pressure Bolsover couldn’t keep out, which saw Henley stealing the victory 3-2 with barely time for the game to restart.

A very poor showing from an admittedly understrength Henley, but their character and grit thankfully compensated for this uncharacteristic blip. Few players came out of the game with much credit, the Ultra’s MOTM vote almost unanimously going to Gussy White who ran himself into the ground for the club. But, there is a well worn adage in football, that winning when playing poorly is a sign of a strong side, I’ll take that.

Damo and his Wickham boys will be gutted to lose in such a manner, they were excellent and any unknowing observer would’ve seen little or no difference in quality between the sides on the day. They gave their all for their manager for the entirety of the match and played some good, passing football throughout, all at Henley wish them well for the rest of the season.

A word or two of credit for today’s referee Mr Skaja, who managed the game well throughout, communicated excellently and seemed to thoroughly enjoy his afternoon.