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Scarborough 1-0 Kingstonian

Twenty-four hours after being handed a reprieve by their creditors, Scarborough took to the field in a game which was in some doubt over the previous few days. The home fans gave their side a rapturous greeting, while the K's fans - minus some 30 stuck in the middle of nowhere on the Supporters' Club coach (this author included) - hoped that they would see a repeat of last season's early win.

Now, due to the "middle of nowhere" location, the first 30 or so minutes were heard rather than seen, thanks to BBC Radio York and the coach's radio. So if something is wrong, blame commentator Ivan Ash not me. Sound fair?!

As was probably obvious, it was the home side who made the better start. Simon Betts sent in an early cross which Steve Brodie came close to connecting with. Luckily for K's, the hero of Dagenham - Richard Hurst - got there before the attacker. There then followed a long spell of Scarborough pressure, in which they won two corners in quick succession.

The second was cleared by K's towards the edge of the area. There, Ex-K Marcus Jones got the ball and was fouled by Ex-S David Bass. The radio commentators thought that it might have been a penalty. It wasn't, but it might as well have been. Whilst Richard Hurst was busy standing at his near post lining up his wall, Gareth Williams was busy asking the referee whether he could take a quick one. The referee said of course, Williams lobbed the wall and Hurst did his best to get close to the effort. He got a hand to the ball, but wasn't in a good enough position and so Scarborough led. The coach fell silent.

The next 'Boro effort had less of an impact on the scoreline, but more of an impact on Colin Luckett. A cross was heading in the direction of Shaun Rennison, Luckett toe-poked the ball away only for Rennison to continue his foot swing, kicking him in "a place you wouldn't show your mother". At least that's what Radio York's pundit said - we presumed he meant the testicles. Luckett went down in agony, finally left the field after treatment and hobbled back on a few moments later, voice notably higher than previously.

K's did have one effort on goal in the first half, and this came from David Bass. Pitcher received the ball with his back to goal in the area, did well to hold off the defenders, laid it back to Bass who forced a good save from Andy Woods.

The game threatened to turn ugly for a few moments, and this all really started with a foul by Gareth Stoker. Eddie Akuamoah was the recipient, but luckily for him Mark Beard was there to break his fall. Except it wasn't so lucky for Beard, who departed the field on a stretcher. Before he returned K's had another effort, when Bass crossed only for Pitcher to head over. Then, restored to parity - in numbers if not in score - K's went close once more. Winston cut in from the left and played a good ball to Akuamoah. With a great chance to duplicate his 1999 effort, he failed miserably with an effort well wide of Woods' goal.

At the other end, another cross from Brodie was met by Betts who was very close to connecting at the far post. So that he wouldn't get close next time, Beard then elbowed him in the neck and received a yellow card for his pains. Another foul, this time by Eddie Saunders, was met with yellow by referee Mr.R.Tiffin, Pitcher complained and was given the same treatment. Let's just hope we're not sweating over another Pitcher disciplinary problem come next May.....

Half time was proceeded by another good chance for the home side, but Stoker shot just wide. Oh, and it was also proceeded (just) by the arrival of the Supporters' Club coach. Fifteen hours of travelling to see 60 minutes play? Well worth the money don't you think?

To be fair, the second half did see more effort coming from the Kingstonian players. Eddie Akuamoah was clearly showing us he cares when he was seen bringing the ball clear from his own area. Unfortunately he got it all wrong, lost the ball and must have been glad to see Brodie shoot narrowly wide. Just after, Eddie got up the right end and set up Winston to shoot low, producing a good save from Woods and a corner for K's. Just after this, a Simon Stewart long throw was flicked on by substitute Simba and Eddie Saunders headed just wide.

The pendulum swung the other way, with Hurst almost handing 'Boro a chance to increase their lead when he pushed a right-wing cross onto Eddie Saunders' back. Luckily Stewart was there to clear before Williams could connect. Moments later and it looked as though the lead really would double. A cross from Rennison was met by sub Chris Tate on the edge of the area. He touched the ball around Hurst but could then only shoot across the goal from a very tight angle. The substitute was then presented with another chance, this time by Betts, but he headed just wide at the far right-hand post.

A bad kick from Woods almost gave K's a chance to get back into the game, but the ball went to Pitcher who was far more concerned with upping the penalty tally than scoring. He ran into the area, hooked his leg around Jones' and produced the most horrendous dive which convinced nobody. He can only feel lucky that the referee didn't award him what would have been his second yellow card of the day.

Into injury time, Scarborough thought that they had finally made it two when Brodie brilliantly chipped Hurst. Unfortunately he was given offside by the linesman. But it didn't really matter. Scarborough had played with a lot of heart - as would have been expected by a team just given a reprieve from extinction - whilst Kingstonian continued their poor early season form. Quite simply, the back line doesn't look secure, the midfield is having trouble producing chances and the forward line is having trouble taking those that are created. Oh, and the Supporters' Club is having trouble with its travel arrangements. But apart from that things look great.....

Sat 26th Aug 2000
McCain Stadium
Football Conference
1Richard Hurst
2Mark BeardCautioned
3Colin Luckett
4Eddie SaundersCautioned
5Simon Stewart15
6Mark Harris
7David Bass
8Geoff PitcherCautioned
9Sammy Winston
10Ronnie Green12
11Eddie Akuamoah
12Amara Simba10
13Steve Farrelly
14Derek Allan
15Junior Kadi5
16Luke Basford
Man of the Match
Sammy Winston
Sammy Winston
Match Report By
Gary Ekins