In the shadows of the Elstree Studios, magnificent Macclesfield Town moved to within four points of the National League title with another magical performance which will forever be etched within the hearts of all those fortunate enough to have witnessed it.
With the season ebbing ever close to a spectacular finale, Sir John’s side sublimely cast our play off seeking hosts aside, buoyed by an incredible following who never stopped singing, never stopped shouting and never stopped believing.
Forty eight hours on, the lifelong memories we created down in Hertfordshire still bring a tear to my eye due to the immense pride they elicit – they probably always will.
The first half began at a frantic pace, with both sides looking to assert their authority on the game within the opening exchanges.
With just two minutes on the clock David Fitzpatrick stormed down the left, before his cross was glanced just wide by Nathan Blissett from ten yards out.
Morgan Ferrier then hit a speculative effort high and wide of Shwan Jalal’s goal and shortly after skipper Jared Hodgkiss sublimely brought a dangerous home counter-attack to an end with a visionary interception.
Danny Whitehead, who returned to the side following a hamstring strain then saw his effort blocked by Mark Ricketts on the edge of the area and on 9 minutes Mitch Hancox fired over the bar, after his darting run down the left saw him leave his marker for dead.
Bruno Andrade then won a free kick for the hosts which was blocked on the line by Jalal – George Pilkington being on hand to clear the danger, much to the delight of the visiting contingent.
Keith Lowe then bravely blocked Andrade’s fifteen yard strike and by this point it was abundantly clear for all to see that our red and black clad heroes were at their tenacious best.
The breakthrough came after 20 minutes when Jared Hodgkiss’ cross from the right was brilliantly won by Mitch Hancox, who played the ball through for Tyrone Marsh to hammer home from close range.
Our lead could well have been extended just two minutes later as Hancox’s cross from the left was exquisitely volleyed towards goal by Marsh, yet Grant Smith somehow managed to turn the ball around the near post.
For a time it looked as though only a freak passage of play would open the door for an equalising goal, yet this almost happened on 27 mins when a deflection off the Referee sent Andrade free down the left.
The Portuguese midfielder raced down the wing, before his cross was met by Ferrier on the six yard line, as he glanced his header wide of Jalal’s far post.
Shwan Jalal was once again showing inspired form inbetween the posts for the visitors, with a plethora of confident clearances and punches under pressure from the Boreham Wood attack which injected calmness into the players and fans alike.
Ricky Shakes fired a twenty yard drive over the bar for the hosts on the stroke of half time, but as our warriors marched off the pitch there was little doubt that this was to be an magical evening for everyone associated with our beloved club.
After the travelling contingent had managed to regain their vocal chords and Sir John had imparted his words of infinite wisdom, the second period begin with the visitors in total control.
The two Danny’s orchestrated the midfield in a manner only they can and in a manner which left the home side constantly chasing shadows.
Although chances fell in a fairly sporadic manner for a time, our heroes fought for every ball, were committed in every challenge and exemplified the level of belief which is reserved only for champions.
On 54 minutes Mitch Hancox powered his way down the left wing, before his tantalising cross along the six yard area was met by Nathan Blissett.
The Plymouth loanee connected sweetly with the ball as he fired it back across goal, yet Smith made a simply world class save to tip the ball around the post.
Four minutes later Marsh bagged his second to send the away fans behind the goal into delirium.
Danny Whitaker’s corner from the right was played back to him by Whitehead, before the ball was whipped into the penalty area and an advancing Tyrone Marsh buried an absolute bullet header past Smith from ten yards.
With tears in our eyes and infinite joy in our hearts, we celebrated with our inspirational team knowing just what that goal meant to us all.
Whereas Sir John’s side retained their offensive potency at one end of the pitch, Shwan Jalal proved to be as solid as ever at the other and on 63 minutes Morgan Ferrier cut inside from the left and hammered a low drive at goal which the Iraqi did well to claim with apparent ease.
Three minutes later and Marsh could well have claimed the match ball, as Callum Evans’s majestic flick fell right into his path, yet Smith would deny him with a good save at his near post.
Sir John’s side began to lay siege on the Boreham Wood goal in a manner which we are now all accustomed to.
The fight and tenacity present in every single one of these very special players cannot adequately be put into words and this was undoubtedly on show in front of their army of devoted followers.
Although Dave Stevens glanced a header wide on 76 minutes, Jalal was rarely tested and that was down to the phenomenal players he had in front of him.
This was impeccably summed up ten minutes from time as Lowe superbly denied Andrade a shot at goal, with a full blooded challenge on the edge of the area.
As the Referee brought the drama to it’s conclusion, the magnificent following joined with their heroes to celebrate yet another pulsating victory with tears in there eyes.
There is one thing for certain as we go into the last three chapters of this awe-inspiring season and that is you will never, ever see scenes like this again.
Boreham Wood: G Smith, K Smith, Woodards (Balanta 60’), Ricketts, Stephens, Shakes, Champion, Murtagh, Andrade (Folivi 82’), Davey, Ferrier
Subs not used: Harfield, Quigley, Doe
Macclesfield Town: Jalal, Hodgkiss ©, Fitzpatrick, Lowe, Pilkington, Marsh, Blissett, Hancox, Evans, Whitehead (Kennedy 89’), Whitaker
Subs not used: Wilson, Ramsbottom, Burgess, De Girolamo