Yet the match started promisingly enough for the visitors. In the first minute a long pass from inside-right Jimmy Carter put Mick Browning on the goal-hunting path and he side-stepped defender Goodhew only for home goalkeeper Redford to deflect his powerful shot behind for a corner. Immediately the set-piece was cleared and Horsham snapped up the ball, with Keith Brister galloping away but, when ideally placed, he lifted the ball squarely into Redford’s welcoming arms.
Redford kicked clear once more and Horsham skipper Billy Bell sent back a fast return. For a few hectic moments Redford had to scramble for the ball. And that was about the last of Horsham on the attack!
A rally by Slough sparked off a series of strong thrusts and left-back John Browning cut short one attack on the wing and slipped it back for ‘keeper Ron Watson. He gathered the ball and then dropped it, fumbled it, and finally let it roll over the line for a corner. Then, when right-winger Bloom sent over a well-placed cross, Watson missed the ball and only quick thinking by Ron Hartley prevented an early goal for the hosts.
The Slough dangerman, inside-right McWilliam, and centre-forward Loughran worked hard together but spoilt goalworthy chances with erratic potshots. In a Horsham attack Carter, injured only minutes before in a collision with a Slough defender, rammed the ball across the Slough goal where everyone, including Browning, missed the ball and Slough cleared their lines.
The only goal of the match came during the closing minutes of the first half. Fastening on to a pass from partner McWilliam, Bloom dribbled his way to the centre of the field and tried to barge his way into the Horsham goalmouth where he tumbled to the ground when coming up against centre-half Glyn Jones. The referee whistled and pointed to the penalty spot and Patterson beat Watson with a low drive into the corner of the net. Horsham rallied and a shot from Keith Brister beat Redford but, as the ball dropped on the goal-line, left-back Glanvill dashed in and booted it out.
Immediately after the interval Horsham moved quickly goalwards and a curling corner from Brister was just punched clear by Redford. A Slough attack, five minutes into the second period, looked dangerous as left-winger McCullum moved towards the Horsham goal. Once again Hartley got the upper hand and Mick Browning was only just beaten to the ball by centre-half Claridge as they raced for the long upfield pass.
For a while Horsham looked as if they would take command. Dennis Stillwell went close with a fine shot and Brister lobbed in a nice pass. But inside-left Geoff Crowther saw his crisp shot parried and then cleared before Browning could run in. Then Slough took over again and Horsham had a close shave when Watson rushed out and missed a high ball but, luckily for him, McCullum’s header was wide. Shortly afterwards he made amends by saving stinging shots from Loughran. In the closing minutes Horsham made a last desperate bid to snatch a point but the Slough defenders pounced on the attackers before any damage could be done.
Horsham Line up
Ron Watson, Ron Hartley, John Browning, Billy Bell, Glyn Jones, Roy Mobsby, Denis Stillwell, Jimmy Carter, Mick Browning, Geoff Crowther, Keith Brister.