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Kingstonian 0-0 Woking

Rather like 24 hours previously, today's game was somewhat of an anti-climax following days, if not weeks, of anticipation. A number of changes were made to the K's team, which included Wayne Brown in place of Simon Stewart and Patterson suspended whilst Eddie was sitting on the bench, presumed injured. Woking brought a large following with them to the better part of Surrey but unfortunately neither sets of supporters truly found their voices, and neither sets of players truly found the form which would be expected of two teams riding high in the Conference.

K's, attacking the Kingston Road End in the first half, started brightly. Luckett had a good shot and Willgrass was soon wandering into the opponents penalty area looking for a penalty. A pendulum like motion of attack and defence occurred. K's won corners while Woking won free-kicks. A good break by The Cards saw Payne put West through, but he sliced his shot wide and over the goal. After this, Boylan won a free-kick and from the resulting set play was unlucky to head over from Pitcher's cross.

But K's really should have taken the lead in a mad scramble that ensued in the twentieth minute. A poor Corbett cross was cut back and despite their greatest efforts, Boylan, Leworthy and Pitcher could not find their shooting boots amidst the muddy penalty area. As Pitcher regained possession the chance died down after another appalling dive for a penalty. But the pendulum was still, er, penduluming, and a Danny Bolt cross-shot at the other end saw Farrelly block the attempt using his shins. And, then back to the goal K's were attacking. This time a Pitcher free-kick following a foul on Mustafa, saw Corbett arriving late at the back post, and he really was unlucky to see his header crash against the hoardings.

Surprisingly, there was a lot of pressure on both goal mouths but no real chances. Matt Crossley did well to get to a well flighted Pitcher corner, while a fine long range shot by Grant Payne saw him miss by inches. Back to the other end, Pitcher was very unlucky not to thread through Leworthy but then, as if a passing accuracy test was being conducted, Payne threaded through Danny Bolt whose shot from the left of the area missed the right hand post by a matter of inches too. Pulses were really racing when Wayne Brown headed on target from another Pitcher free-kick but Batty was more than equal to this.

As the first half ended, an unusual booking occurred. From an over-hit Pitcher corner, Crossley was unable to make contact as he was back peddling six yards beyond the back post and practically on the by-line. He handled the ball to stop it going out but, of course, a free-kick was given. It seemed harsh when the referee, Mr. A. M. Wilkins, booked him for this, but there could really be no complaints from the K's. Apart from Mark Harris of course, who became fourth official as he was remonstrating with the referee as the 25 went off for half time.

The second half promised an even less inspiring atmosphere as the two teams were shooting away from their respective fans. The promise was delivered, despite Stuart Girdler's best efforts to score from a spectacular long range strike. At the Athletics Track End, Leworthy set Lee Boylan free. His cross was dangerous and eventually fell to Geoff Pitcher whose deceptively slow shot produced many an 'ooooh!' from all in the ground.

Today was certainly a day for the long shots, and Willgrass was the next to get involved. His right foot shot forced Batty to move and make a save that was impressive enough to not be insulted by K's-ites present. K's looked dangerous on the right today with Mustafa exciting going forward and also playing well in defence and Boylan certainly looks promising despite failing to produce anything of notice to the masses. His best effort came when a good run saw him draw out Batty who was committed to making a challenge. Boylan's pace was enough to beat, even an agile keeper, so he got past Batty with ease but was dispossessed by Dalton Grant Eddie Saunders just before the by-line.

Woking's forward line was not to be outdone and an impressive move involving Bolt and Payne saw the latter's shot well stopped by Farrelly. Soon after this, Bolt had an attempt too which Farrelly was again greater than or equal to. At this time Woking were on top and Girdler's shot spilled out and was looped back in. This forced Farrelly to make an impressive punch in the midst of a number of green shirted attackers and was then required to do the same from the resulting corner.

Scott Corbett was booked soon after this for a quite awful foul. Though in a way, this was refreshing as it was the first booking that wasn't for a really stupid reason. Crossley's handball, Brown's clumsiness and Pitcher's dissent were all needless bookings which do nothing to help the club's current disciplinary problem. As if to better the ratio, Willgrass then hacked down an opponent and was subsequently booked. As Darren Hay was brought into the fray, Woking looked more threatening. Wayne Brown was unable to deal with his pace and it was good for K's that he was not involved in proceedings at an earlier time.

More brilliance from Mustafa, saw the full-back win possession and then carry it forward and pass it into Boylan's path. He was then dangerous in the area and was certainly clipped. Had he fallen, a penalty may well have been given, but he remained on his feet and the chance was over, as was the match.

So the game ended 0-0, with Woking the moral victors as this was on Kingstonian's (lush) turf. Yet K's remain the most recent winners in such a battle so can still claim the 'Pride of Surrey' status. For now. January 2nd is sure to be another story entirely.

Sat 26th Dec 1998
Kingsmeadow Stadium
Football Conference
1Steve Farrelly
2Tarkan Mustafa
3Colin Luckett
4Matt CrossleyCautioned
5Wayne BrownCautioned
6Mark Harris
7Scott CorbettCautioned
8Geoff PitcherCautioned
9Lee Boylan
10David Leworthy
11Alex WillgrassCautioned
12Danny Smith
14Dean Thomas
15Eddie Akuamoah
Man of the Match
Tarkan Mustafa
Tarkan Mustafa
Match Report By
Gary Ekins