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Ex-RMI boss Waywell

By Matt Lawton
March 24 2006

RMI old boy Neil Tolson scored a dramatic injury time equaliser to grab a point for ten man Hyde at a rain soaked Hilton Park on Friday evening. Hyde boss Steve Waywell (pictured), mastermind of RMI's glory years in the late 1990's, returned to Hilton Park as an opposing manager for the first time this evening, looking to put one over his former employees and plunge them further in to the relegation mire.

The sides last met at Ewen Fields in November when RMI produced a terrific second half comeback to get a point from a 3-3 draw after previously being two goals behind, in much the same manner that saw RMI claw back a 3-0 deficit to get a point at Worksop last weekend, again in a six goal thriller.

Although any sort of upturn in RMI's home form will go a long way in helping them preserve their Conference North status, it was the visitors who started by far the brightest, putting James Coates in the RMI goal under a fair amount of early pressure as they looked to get on the scoresheet.

RMI started to get back in to the game, and a defensive howler allowed Neil Smith a great chance, but despite beating the goalkeeper, he could only hit his shot agonisingly across the face of goal. Some excellent approach play then created an opening for Chris Simm, but his ambitious curling shot from the edge of box flew past the far post with Mark Crossley beaten in the Hyde goal.

RMI managed to ride their luck a little and Hyde hit the bar from a corner whilst creating a couple of other openings, but neither side could break the deadlock before the break.

The second half followed much the same pattern, with Hyde making much of the early running, only for RMI to come back in to it. RMI were indebted to James Coates for making a terrific save to tip the ball away for a corner from almost directly underneath his crossbar.

Despite the pressure being exerted on their defence, RMI started to get back in to the game, and their cause was given a huge boost when Hyde striker Mark Quayle, a one-time RMI trialist and consistent thorn in their side ever since, was given his marching orders for a late tackle on George Melling that saw the RMI defender withdraw from the action through injury.

RMI eventually took the lead in the second half when left back Andy Roscoe somehow found himself in the Hyde penalty area, and he had enough composure to poke the ball in to the net, much to the delight of the home faithful.

This was followed by a long period of backs-to-the-wall football as Hyde tried to ignore their numerical disadvantage and get themselves back in to the game.

Waywell had his last throw of the dice as the game entered four minutes of injury time at the end of the game, throwing on ex-RMI striker Neil Tolson in a desperate attempt to win the game.

A frantic period followed as Hyde forced corner after corner, and just as RMI thought they'd cleared the worst, up popped Tolson to equalise with barely seconds remaining on the clock. A crushing blow for RMI, and they barely had time to kick off before the final whistle was blown.

Conceding such a late goal is always going to be a bitter pill to swallow, but when it's one of your former players who does the damage, and especially the fraught situation that RMI find themselves in at the foot of the table, it comes as a real sickener for RMI players and supporters alike. The RMI team will now have to pick themselves up ahead of next weekend's visit to high flying Nuneaton as they embark on the next leg of their unlikely Great Escape.

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