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Kingstonian 0-0 Morecambe

With the games coming at a pace of one every two days there has to be some poor ones. Unfortunately the 834 crowd packed into Kingsmeadow saw one of them. But having said that, as an end-of-season, nobody-really-cares game it wasn't that bad. Chapple again took the opportunity to change his team around, and there was a very welcome return for David "out for the season" Leworthy on the bench. Simon Stewart seems to have disappeared again though.

K's started brightly, and even got the ball in the net, with Colin Luckett sending in a free-kick from the right. Mark Harris headed down and Junior Kadi turned in his first goal for K's. But alas, looking across everybody saw the messenger of doom, aka the linesman, with his flag aloft. The goal was strangely ruled our for offside, even though Kadi surely moved past a defender to get to the ball. Not that we ever passed a referee's exam...

One player with an outside chance of a place at Wembley (shyeah, right) is Gary Drewett, and he was handed the number eleven shirt for just his third start of the season. Before now he's always looked to be a bit part player, one who comes into his own when real players need a rest before a big game. But against Morecambe it has to be said that he looked very good. He went on one particularly good run on the left wing which saw him cut in and fire a shot at Andy Banks' goal. The shot was going wide, but Banks didn't realise and palmed off for a corner. From that Mark Harris headed into the middle and Eddie Saunders attempted an overhead kick at goal. Needless to say he got it wrong (he must have been getting advice from Mark Harris), but the ball did strike Andy Fensome, standing on the line at the time, on the arm. Seventeen of the crowd appealed for a penalty whilst the rest turned to their friends enquiring exactly which end of Wembley they'll be sitting...

Morecambe weren't about to spoil their fans' day though, and they went close when Stewart Drummond fed John Norman for a shot. His looping effort just cleared the bar over Farrelly's head, but at least it gave the Morecambe fans an excuse for some more singing. Norman almost gave the visitors the lead just after, when a cross from the left cleared the top of his head by a whisker.

But overall it was the Trophy finalists (doesn't that sound good?!) who had the upper hand in the first half. This was proved before the break, when Junior Kadi - another player who seems to have been awoken with the prospect of Wembley on the horizon - shooting against the post from a position on the right. The rebound fell to Pitcher who sent an abysmal (by his standards) shot back in only for Fensome to turn away. Simba shot wide after a Mustafa cross and Kadi had another effort turned away by Banks, despite the deflection.

It was a good first half display from K's against a team who hadn't lost in the league since those snowy days of January. But the second half failed to live up to expectations as Morecambe's desire overcame the K's effort, and it was the visitors who might, or maybe even should, have taken the three points. Their first chance was superbly crafted when a long hoof from Banks bounced over Mark Harris to leave Justin Jackson with a one-on-one with Farrelly. England's number one did well to come out and smother before the striker could shoot. Tarkan Mustafa limped off to be replaced by Lester, but there seems to be no long-term worries over the Tarks' leg.

Drummond set up Michael Knowles for a shot from the edge which came perilously close to Farrelly's right hand post. Norman then headed a corner towards the bottom right, only to see that saved, as Morecambe really got the bit between their teeth. Phil Eastwood was the next to come close as he gave Farrelly another chance to shine - this time to save a shot bound for the top-right. The best chance to tie up the points came just after when a corner was headed goalwards by Norman. Farrelly saved only for the ball to drop to Jackson. His shot looked to be a certain goal, but Eddie Saunders made his third goal-line clearance in as many games to turn the ball away.

Drummond went close with a twenty yard free-kick, but again Farrelly was equal, before a sight to warm the cockles. Simba and Drewett went off and on came Leworthy and O'Connor. It's been a while since we've seen Leworthy, and since then we've picked up Simba, but surely there's always a place for a player of Leworthy's quality. But then he didn't do much while he was on and there weren't really any more chances. A nil-nil draw had looked unlikely at the start of the game, but these end of season games aren't always that easy to predict. K's had the lion's share of the first half whilst Morecambe won the second, which made it all quite proper that the points were shared.

Wed 26th Apr 2000
Kingsmeadow Stadium
Football Conference
1Steve Farrelly
2Tarkan Mustafa15
3Colin Luckett
4Matt Crossley
5Eddie Saunders
6Mark Harris
7Gary Patterson
8Geoff Pitcher
9Junior Kadi
10Amara Simba12
11Gary Drewett14
12David Leworthy10
13Richard Hurst
14Joe O'Connor11
15Mike Lester2
16Luke Basford
Man of the Match
Junior Kadi
Junior Kadi
Match Report By
Gary Ekins