Dons Defeat Overshadowed By Brown Sabbatical
Torquay 4 v Wimbledon 0
Wimbledon slumped to their third successive defeat as they lost 4-0 at Torquay on Tuesday (25 October), but the result was overshadowed by news that manager Terry Brown is taking a break to be with his sick wife.
Brown missed the defeat to be with wife Suzy, who is facing an operation for cancer next week. In 2007 Brown quit his role as manager of Aldershot while she battled leukaemia.
A statement on the club's website said: "Terry will be taking some time to be with his family. Stuart Cash and Simon Bassey will run team affairs in the meantime.
"We have passed on everyone's best wishes and love to Suzy and Terry and naturally our thoughts are with them."
This result failed to offer a lift for Brown, but it could have been different as the Dons had the better of the opening half-hour.
Christian Jolley had two golden opportunities to put the visitor ahead, but his unmarked header went tamely into Bobby Olejnik's hands and then his fierce shot was tipped over the bar.
And when Jolley set up Max Porter, the former Rushden & Diamonds man scuffed his effort.
The Dons were made to pay after 32 minutes when Danny Stevens' cut in from the left and his shot took a cruel deflection of Callum McNaughton to beat Seb Brown at his near post.
But things were to get worse before half-time. First McNaughton was caught in possession by Eunan O'Kane who charged forward and lifted the ball over the advancing Brown.
And then on the stroke of the break a Torquay counterattack saw O'Kane's deep cross volleyed home by Rene Howe at the far post.
By that time Jolley had been forced out of the action by injury, replaced by Charles Ademeno, and the shaky defending again reared its head 11 minutes into the second period as the defence failed to properly clear their lines and the ball fell to Howe who blasted home from outside the area to make it 4-0.
The Dons continued to try to create openings, with Ademeno looking lively, but Torquay were a constant threat on the counterattack.
Afterwards, Stuart Cash told the club's official website: "The same bugbear of individual mistakes came back to undermine us again.
"We need to get back to basics, tighten up the defence and remind [the players] that only a couple of weeks ago we were looking a very good team indeed."
The Dons have an opportunity for that revival as they visit Shrewsbury Town on Saturday (29 October) before hosting Lawrie Sanchez's Barnet on 5 November.
Torquay: Olejnik, Nicholson, Ellis, Saah, Oastler, Mansell, O'Kane (Leadbitter 86), Bodin (McPhee 81), Stevens (Atieno 46), Lanthrope, Howe. Subs not used: Rice, Halpin.
Goalscorers: Stevens 32, O'Kane 43, Howe 45, 56.
Wimbledon: Brown, Hatton, Johnson, S. Moore, Stuart, McNaughton (Bush 65), Wellard, Porter, Midson, L. Moore (Mulley 65), Jolley (Ademeno 41). Subs not used: Turner, Minshull.
Booked: Hatton 76, Stuart 83.
By Rob Crane
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October 28, 2011