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Hayes 3-0 Kingstonian

With just seven days to go until the first "big one", an eleven resembling a K's first team took to the field at Hayes. Tom White replaced Matt Crossley in defence whilst youngster Simon Langley was handed his league debut in midfield. Another change came at left-back where Kofi Nyamah returned and allowed Colin Luckett to move up into midfield. So all in all it seemed to be a fairly strong side, but by the end of the ninety minutes, it was one that was shown to be seriously under strength.

But however much the team had been disrupted, it surely can't explain some of the individual errors which occurred. The first example came as early as the seventh minute, when a ball from the left was misjudged by Mark Harris. He allowed it to bounce over his head and, with Lee Charles in no mood to let gifts be spurned, the first goal was scored. Farrelly was obviously not expecting Harris to be beaten so easily, and so can be excused for being so far out of his goal, and it was certainly well taken. It just seems strange that, whenever one of the back three is absent, the remaining twosome can't seem to perform as usual.

A lifeless and almost silent K's following can't have helped matters, which was a shame after such a good vocal backing at Northwich in the last game. It was pleasing to see more numbers than in recent league games, but the atmosphere was testament to the fact that K's season now rests totally on success in the Trophy.

Langley had the first sniff of a chance for the visitors, but wasted it with a woeful drive over. And then it was time for more defensive errors. However much Wayne Brown has let down Chapple in recent times, there can be no way that he is so much worse than Tom White that he doesn't even deserve to make the bench when a centre-half is injured. White is continually out of position, seems to have great trouble controlling the ball and finds it difficult to pass to a team mate. If that is the standard of defending in the Football League than roll on next year and promotion.

Suffice to say that Hayes had more chances. Catlin headed across goal after good work by Spencer with Farrelly beaten - luckily Harris was on hand to hack the ball away. A good move saw Watts released on Hayes' right wing who then chipped the ball over Simon Stewart to play in Lee Charles for another chance. His right foot volley was destined for the top right hand corner until Farrelly produced a fine save to deny the striker.

As half time approached K's had their one proper chance of the half. A Langley free-kick was headed back to Leworthy by Harris, but the captain-for-the-day's shot went wide. But it has to be said that, after the interval, K's did come out a more determined side. With Pitcher on the bench, many people expected his introduction, but were disappointed, as he didn't even bother to warm up at half-time. Leworthy had an early chance, set up by Eddie, but Russell Meara, on his last ever home appearance for Hayes, was determined to keep his sheet clean and produced a fine save low to his left. Harris and Stewart managed to do to each other what the Hayes defence should have done - that is prevent them from heading in Luckett's corner, as they managed to collide before the best chance of the after noon fell to Eddie.

Simon Stewart has obviously just discovered that he can hurl a long throw, and decided that today was the day when he would reveal this new weapon. Rattray flicked on and the ball bounced in front of Eddie about 8 yards out. The less said about the finish the better - let's just say that a good connection would have made it 2-1, but sadly the score stayed at 2-0.

Simon Langley, wearing Gary Patterson's number 7 shirt, picked up his predictable booking before the game was put out of K's reach by a brief period of Hayes pressure. Another long ball was played deep into K's territory towards Harris. Obviously mindful of his first half mishap he again left the ball to Farrelly, but this time made sure that the goalkeeper was aware of his decision. Yet again it was Charles who piled the pressure onto Farrelly by jumping with him in the area. Now here's a quick lesson:

Steve Farrelly is 6 feet seven inches, whilst Lee Charles is possibly just about six feet. The K's goalkeeper is allowed to use his arms, extending his total length to well over seven feet. As most school children will tell you, 7 and a bit minus six leaves one and a bit. Therefore, when Farrelly jumped to win the bouncing ball with Charles, he should have been at least a foot bigger than his opponent. So what exactly went wrong ?! Answers on an email.....

Anyway, nobody came out with the ball after the first bounce, so another contest was on to see who would win the David and Goliath battle. Goliath, whose height and hands obviously didn't give him enough of an advantage, decided that he needed the extra elevation which comes from climbing on somebody's back. A penalty was the oh-so-predictable result with the only decision left to the referee being whether the card he produced would be yellow or red. Luckily it was only yellow and Farrelly can count himself fortunate.

He made up for his haplessness, in part, with another fine penalty save, but the K's defence was obviously of the opinion that the "no rebounds" rule was in force as they stood idly by as Martin Randall put the ball home at the second attempt. And just five minutes later saw the third goal go in as Charles poked home from a Spencer cross.

The Hayes team met the final whistle with celebrations reminiscent of France's recent win in Paris in the World Cup final whilst the K's players trooped off failing to even acknowledge the presence of any of their fans. But then it's not like they would have heard them. Three-nil was certainly a fair result, although K's second half performance probably deserved a goal. Or maybe just a really good shot which just went wide. Or at least something memorable. Still, there's only two more games to go until we'll all care again. Then we're bound to see some enthusiasm both on and off the pitch.

Sat 3rd Apr 1999
Church Road
Football Conference
1Steve FarrellyCautioned
2Tarkan Mustafa
3Kofi Nyamah
4Tom White
5Simon Stewart
6Mark Harris
7Simon LangleyCautioned
8Colin Luckett
9Kevin Rattray
10David Leworthy14
11Eddie Akuamoah15
12Geoff Pitcher
14Carl Tranter10
15Delton Francis11
Man of the Match
Kevin Rattray
Match Report By
Gary Ekins