Scotia Smith's match report...
Walsall took on top of the league and unbeaten Bolton Wanderers at the Banks’ on a bright and sunny afternoon on Saturday. The crowd of 5962, included a large and loud section of away fans.
The game was very cagey at the start, with just a few early shots from each side. Then out off the blue, Walsall’s Edwards got sent off for elbowing. This didn’t go down well with the Walsall fans and the atmosphere in the ground got very lively indeed.
Ten man Walsall pushed forward and from a free kick in the 25th minute, McCarthy scrambled the ball into the net. GOAL! The crowd went wild!
Walsall now needed to hang on to their lead for over an hour with a man less. Could they do it? Goalie, Neil Etheridge, made a magnificent save to keep their lead right on half time. Phew! 45 minutes to go!
In the second half, Bolton kept pushing forward but the Walsall defence held out magnificently. Etheridge made more great saves and the one from a Proctor volley was definitely world class.
It wasn’t all defending though and Morris and Oztumer had good shots on goal. Right at the end, Anderson was sent off for Bolton - he had only just come on as a sub!
The clock was ticking down and both sets of fans were shouting and screaming for their teams. Finally, the ref blew his whistle and Walsall had beaten the league leaders. What a result! What a game!
In the press conference, John Whitney was extremely happy. He asked ME to ask him a question so I decided on ‘What was the best part of the game for you?’ He answered: ‘The final whistle.’