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Cray Valley 8/11/14 Lost 2-3

Match Report by Kevin Hall posted on 8th November 2014

More woes for United after stoppage time winner gives Cray Valley the points

Match Stats

Date: Sat 8 Nov 2014

Kick Off: 3.00pm

Match Type: Southern Counties East Football League

Venue: Badgers Sports Club, Eltham

Score (FT): 2-3

Score (HT): 2-1

Referee: Leigh Judd

Assistants: T Burman & M Imgram


Yellow Cards: None

Red Cards: None

Yellow Cards: None

Red Cards: None

Joe Mant
Luke Cuthbert
Charlie Dickens
James Everitt (off 71)
Liam Walsh
Pat Kingwell
Tom Scorer (off 61)
Adam Cuthbert
Stuart Zanone
Andy Irvine (off 76)
Keiran Byrne

Substitutes (used *)
Gary Mickelborough * (on 61)
Michael Smissen * (on 76)
Harry Priddle * (on 71)
Jordan Harris
Lloyd Blackman

Stevie Sutton
Ryan Sawyer
Adam Gross
Jimmy Rogers
Paul Gross
Ronnie Vint
Ben Yiadom (off 90+3)
Jamie Miller
Jim Doherty
Alex Chambers
Alwayne Jones (off 71)

Substitutes (used *)
Ben Healy * (on 90+3)
Merrick Simms * (on 71)
Michael McKenna
Harry Fenner
Grant Lye

Attendance: 57

Just when it looked as if Ashford United would collect another hard earned point, a goal deep into stoppage time sealed a 3-2 victory for hosts Cray Valley in a fluctuating five goal encounter at a wet and windy Eltham.

After a delayed 15 minute start due to traffic problems in the vicinity, it was the Millers who took the lead after 13 minutes through Alwayne Jones. The lively striker collected a neat pass from the aptly named Jamie Miller which split the defence open and Jones with a crisp shot finished well.

It was a worry all afternoon, how often the home side got behind the defence and six minutes later they really should have made it 2-0, but Jim Doherty fired wide in front of an open goal.

However Ashford struck back on 25 minutes via their talisman Stuart Zanone who latched onto a through ball and with still much to do, fired home and restored parity after drifting past a couple of defenders.

It was now a pulsating contest with chances for both sides as the playing surface started to become slicker after several showery bursts of heavy rain.

Then six minutes before the break Zanone struck again to take the Nuts & Bolts back in front after latching onto a mistake by the home goalkeeper Stevie Simms. In trying to kick the ball up the field, Simms could only drill the ball into the backside of Zanone, who reacted quickly and as all good strikers should to any loose ball, he skilfully lobbed the ball in from just outside the box, for his ninth goal in 12 matches since joining the side in September.

Just three minutes into the second-half the hosts levelled when Alex Chambers leapt like a salmon to head home from 12 yards as United were again caught square at the back. It was a soft goal to concede, but one which really fired the Millers into life and just moments after the equaliser Chambers should have found the net again but fired wide.

On the hour mark Ashford came close when Adam Cuthbert dipped a free-kick just over the crossbar, but in truth United rarely looked like taking the lead and it was the home side who were fashioning the better opportunities. Mant pulled off four great saves as the game wore on with the best of these coming in the 87th minute, tipping the ball over the crossbar with a finger-tip save.

But just when it looked that the 19 year-old keeper was going to keep the hosts at bay, he was unlucky when appearing to be impeded when trying to catch a ball from a corner kick in the second minute of added time. However as he fell to the ground amongst a posse of bodies, the loose ball fell at the feet of Ronnie Vint and much to the delight of the home bench, who must have expected to see the goal over-ruled, were overjoyed when it wasn’t as the score became 3-2 with virtually the last kick of the game.

Match Reporter Kevin Hall