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Fisher 9/8/2014 Won 6-1

Match Report by Kevin Hall posted on 9th August 2014

Fisher hit for six as Ashford romp to opening day victory

Match Stats

Date: Sat 9 Aug 2014

Kick Off: 3.00pm

Match Type: Southern Counties East Football League

Venue: The Homelands

Score (FT): 6-1

Score (HT): 3-1

Referee: Richard Butcher

Assistants: Don Macleod & M McCaughlin

Bookings:

Ashford:
Yellow Cards: None

Red Cards: None

:
Yellow Cards: None

Red Cards: None

Teams: ASHFORD UNITED
Joe Mant
Luke Cuthbert
Keiran Byrne
Lee Winfield
Liam Walsh
Pat Kingwell
Gary Clarke
Adam Cuthbert
Andy Irvine (off 71)
Tom Scorer (off 75)
James Everitt (off 77)

Substitutes (used *)
Lloyd Blackman
Gary Mickelborough * (on 77)
Keelan Mooney * (on 75)
Ollie Finch * (on 71)
Tony Allen (gk)

FISHER
Ben Lancaster
Martin Hunter (off 65)
Kyle Demetrious (off 73)
John Fogarty
Calum McGeehan
Billy Walton
Danny Maquire
Harry Draper
Bryan Zepo
Keiron Campbell (off 73)
Junior James

Substitutes (used *)
Aaron Seales * (on 65)
Jack Robbins
Jack Webber * (on 73)
Ashley Henry-Brown * (on 73)
Nick Crowe


Attendance: 224

Ashford United romped to a thumping opening day league victory, beating Fisher 6-1 at The Homelands thanks to a first ever Ashford hat-trick by skipper Gary Clarke, the tally being completed by Tom Scorer, debutant James Everitt and Adam Cuthbert.

There were chances aplenty in the first half, the tone being set as early as 70 seconds, when Everitt signed in the week on dual registration from Folkestone Invicta, poked a through ball towards goal which rebounded agonisingly back off the post.

However it wasn’t long before the opening goal came, when Scorer with a cool finish put the home side in front inside seven minutes. Moments later Everitt, headed over the crossbar with visiting goalkeeper Ben Lancaster well beaten.

It wasn’t all one way traffic as Fisher had chances, but lacked the composure shown by Ashford, Junior James the guilty man, shooting woefully wide after a good turn inside the box. The visitors then enjoyed their best spell of the game, winning a succession of corners and Joe Mant had to be alert, to keep the lead intact.

One of the key players for the home side today was Keiran Byrne, who was lively and a constant menace with his mazy runs at the defence. It is of significance that the somewhat disappointing finale to last season coincided with the talented left sided player, making only two substitute appearances in the final 17 matches of the 2013-14 campaign and Ashford certainly missed his guile. Indeed it was a great run by Byrne from the left touchline that found Clarke, who fired into the roof of the net to double the lead after 21 minutes.

On 34 minutes Fisher pulled a goal back when their best player Bryan Zepo split the defence to finish well, albeit with the aid of a slight deflection to reduce the deficit. However the two goal cushion was quickly restored on 42 minutes when Everitt coolly chipped over the keeper after a great through ball from Scorer, thus becoming the eighth player to score in his debut appearance for United.

A further three goals followed in the second period as Ashford asserted their dominance, but when called into action, the home central defence of Pat Kingwell and the returning Liam Walsh combined well to prevent the “Fish” from making any inroads into the game.

With twenty minutes remaining Adam Cuthbert converted a penalty to make it 4-1, after Everitt had been pulled back inside the 18 yard box, there were few complaints from the opposition. The “Fish” were now floundering as nine minutes later Luke Cuthbert set up Clarke who with a left footed curling chip saw Ashford notch five goals for the first time at Southern Counties East League level.

Barely 90 seconds later a clear handball saw another penalty awarded, so up stepped a rampant Clarke to drill the ball home for a first ever hat-trick for the “Nuts & Bolts”, much to the delight of the majority of the 224 attendance.

Ashford were in no mood to settle for just six goals as substitute Gary Mickelborough set up Adam Cuthbert, but his volley dipped inches over the bar and just before the final whistle Byrne fired over.

It was a great display by Ashford and Fisher will no doubt be pleased that strangely the two sides don’t meet again until the final day of the season. There is of course much to play for between now and next April, but on the evidence of this display Ashford, should certainly be a force to be reckoned with again this season.

Match Reporter Kevin Hall

MATCH STATISTICS

Gary Clarke’s hat-trick was the eighth scored by Ashford United, becoming the fifth different player to score a hat-trick.

It was the second time Ashford United had score a hat-trick on the opening home fixture of the season.

Gary Clarke became the eighth different player to score a penalty for Ashford United.

It was the third time Ashford United have scored two penalties in the same match, but the first time by two different players.

Three players made their debut appearance, Andy Irvine, James Everitt & Keelan Mooney.

James Everitt was the eighth player to score on his debut for Ashford United.

Ashford United have won all four opening home league fixtures.