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Kingstonian 2-0 Scarborough

The 50th competitive game of K's ever-lengthening season was played out before yet another sub-one thousand crowd at Kingsmeadow in bright sunshine for the first visit of last seasons' relegated Football League team. With the second leg of the Trophy semi-final just a week away there were a couple of "injuries" affecting things - most obvious of which was Geoff Pitcher's "groin strain" which enforced his absence. Also missing was Derek Allan, although the fact that he'll be suspended next week may well explain the Crossley, Saunders, Harris back line.

Scarborough brought with them ex-K Marcus Jones and a fair travelling support for this end of season game, which made it surprising that K's really did look so impressive. The home side started well with Luke Basford (deputising for soon-to-return Phil Wingfield) crossing for Amara Simba to head wide. The 39 year old then went close from the edge of the area after good work by Patterson.

At the other end Steve Brodie crossed from the right towards Mark Harris and Darren Roberts who were lurking at the near post. Roberts went flying and as soon as Harris realised he started hurling abuse in the attackers' direction. Referee Mr. R Desmond was quickly upon the scene to put a stop to the debate.

To be truthful though, the first half was almost exclusively Kingstonian pressure. With Colin Luckett filling in admirably for Pitcher in the middle of the field, there really was only ever going to be one team claiming the points at 4.45. Patterson also adjusted well to a Pitcher-less midfield and it was he who played a ball through for Ronald Green on the half hour mark. His further touch set up Eddie Akuamoah to run through to face Andy Woods in the 'Boro goal to seek a repeat of his chipped effort at the McCain stadium back in September. Luckily for Scarborough, Neil Thompson was covering behind his beaten goalkeeper and just managed to get a toe to the effort to send it wide for a croner.

Ronald Green is obviously revelling in his continued run in the first team and looks to be an ideal candidate for a new contract (hint-hint). It was he who almost opened the scoring when he took off on a mazy run on the left and played a one-two with Simba's heel. If Green had showed the same composure in front of goal as he had on the run, K's would have led, but unfortunately he hit his shot straight into Woods' stomach to see the chance go away.

Thirty-two minutes were on the clock when the most talked about incident of the match occurred. There was a "tussle" between Mark Harris and a Scarborough striker, the K's man came away with the ball and played Simba through. The Frenchman was in the centre circle yet had a good chance to make a run on goal. Yet the referee's whistle put paid to any such ambitions. After a small discussion with Simon Betts a red card was produced and the 'Boro number two made his way down the tunnel. After the game the referee claimed that the dismissal was for violent condcut, although many eye-witnesses say that the recipient of the card should have been Paul Ellender. Whatever should have happened, Scarborough were down to ten men and K's looked to be in exactly the right mood to take advantage of the fact.

The game threatened to boil over for a few minutes, but a yellow card given to Colin Luckett for a foul on Gareth Williams calmed down the K's players, as they realised that suspensions at this time of the season might just be a bad idea. And just after this it didn't matter. Luckett won the ball in the middle of the field and passed to Akuamoah. He looked up and saw a rather large Frenchman running goalwards and played the ball to him. Simba was through and showed Ronnie Green exactly how to finish a one-on-one by superbly chipping Woods. This time there was no covering defender, and after just one bounce K's led one-nil.

Another foul, this time by Gareth Stoker, was punished by a yellow card and also led to a left-wing K's corner. Luckett took it and swung it goalwards. The ball struck the bar with Woods flapping and continued on its way. Matt Crossley headed back into the mixer and there we saw a repeat of an oft-attempted but never-quite-got-it-right overhead attempt by Mark Harris. Apparently he did get it right in a recent reserve match, but this is the second time he's managed to embarrass himself for the first team. But then third time lucky and all that.

The second K's goal came just before the break when Green took off on another splendid run. He rounded two defenders and was then faced, once again, by Woods. This time he decided to go around the goalkeeper to the left. There was a chance for a shot, but Green quite rightly decided that Simba was in a much better position than himself and squared the ball for the veteran. One yard out and with an open goal, Simba really had to score. He did, but he came ever so close to sending the ball over the bar as it sneaked in just under the bar.

Scarborough started the second period by missing one of their better chances of the afternoon when Ellender headed over. Basford then set up Green to shoot just wide of Scarborough's goal from twenty yards. The youngster clearly wanted a goal, and it has to be said that he deserved one for his display. Gareth Stoker then went on a mission of his own as he tried to destroy the advertising hoarding to the left of Steve Farrelly's goal. Four times the number eight had a chance to shoot, and four times he sent his shot about six yards wide of goal.

Gary Patterson played a good ball through for Simba, by now on a hat-trick, to chase. Jones was racing back with him and just got there first. The defender tried to head the ball back to his goalkeeper, but Woods had come running out of goal to intercept and so the header went over the keeper and was heading goalwards. Luckily for the visitors Jones was able to scamper around Woods and clear.

That rarest of things, a triple-K's substitution made an appearance, as Crossley, Green and Simba made way for Allan, Boylan and O'Connor, and for a moment it seemed that K's rhythm had been affected. Stewart Morris, a 'Boro sub, had a chance from the edge of the area, and forced Farrelly to make his only real save of the game. The shot was heading for the top left-hand corner and the keeper did very well to tip over.

At the other end, Tarkan went close to extending the K's lead as Woods made a similar tip over to give K's a late corner. From this Scarborough cleared and Morris had another chance. This time he got his angles all wrong and the shot went wide. The referee had seen enough and so K's had kept a clean sheet for the seventh time in the last eight games. And with the ever so important Sutton game just seven days away, things certainly look good down in KT1.

Sat 8th Apr 2000
Kingsmeadow Stadium
Football Conference
Simba (2)
1Steve Farrelly
2Tarkan Mustafa
3Colin LuckettCautioned
4Matt Crossley12
5Eddie Saunders
6Mark Harris
7Gary Patterson
8Ronnie Green15
9Eddie Akuamoah
10Amara Simba16
11Luke Basford
12Derek Allan4
13Richard Hurst
14Junior Kadi
15Lee Boylan8
16Joe O'Connor10
Man of the Match
Amara Simba
Amara Simba
Match Report By
Gary Ekins