[personalise the site]   [search the site]

Welcome to K's Web - home of the Kingstonian archives
The official club website can be found at


Kingstonian 1-1 Hayes

After an opening day win over Canvey Island, Hayes' form had slipped somewhat by the time they arrived at Kingsmeadow for the home side's inaugural Saturday league match of the season. K's named the same team which had overcome Grays on Tuesday night, whilst the visitors proved exactly why team-sheets are essential by changing almost the entire eleven named in the programme.

Mascot, captains and officials

Kingstonian started this match as though they were determined to continue their drive up the league table and should have led inside two minutes. Greg Ball - again picked ahead of Ronnie Green - combined well with Liam Collins out on the right, and his cross found Phil Wingfield at the far post. The chance was a fairly simple one, but Wingers managed to place his header the wrong side of Chris Andrews' goal.

The first half an hour of the match saw almost total domination from the home side. The only sniff of a chance for Hayes came from a woefully short and mis-directed back-pass from Craig Lewington. Richard Jolly nipped in, but thankfully Matt Flitter raced back and executed the perfect sliding tackle to save Lewington's blushes.

Liam Collins had hearts in Hayes mouths when he shot from fully forty yards only for the ball to drop just wide of the post, and the goalkeeper produced a fine save to deny Lewington when he connected with a Collins cross just a couple of minutes later. Wingfield wasted another good chance not long after when he intercepted a pass from Jamie Jarvis, but chose to shoot when Tim Sills stood alone on the far post.

Liam Collins crosses

Referee, Mr Tim Ingram, had had a fairly easy first half an hour, but he was certainly busy as the break approached. Sean Thurgood picked up the first caution for a foul, but this seemed to bring the Hayes team to the boil as three of their players picked up yellow cards within five minutes. Jarvis was cautioned for a foul on Clarke and Mark Molesey for a foul on Jamie Leacock, but the worst of the lot saw Ryan Williams receive the same punishment when he elbowed Greg Ball in the head and then rugby tackled him to the ground as he neared the area.

With so much pressure it was imperative that K's reach the break in the ascendancy, and it looked as though it would be so as we entered the final minute of the half. A corner from the left was partly cleared by the Hayes' defence, but Dave Clarke in particular did well to keep the attack going, and he finally managed to feed the ball to Sean Thurgood. Just outside the box, he side-stepped Yiamdom Yeboah and sent a superb curling effort goalwards with his left foot. Andrews was completely beaten, but was saved as the ball smacked against the crossbar and bounced back into play.

Yet the attack didn't conclude there. Wingfield headed the ball back into the mixer, where Andrews, John Murphy and Flitter all jumped for the ball. The goalkeeper didn't make much of a connection with the ball, and via the deftest of touches from Flitter's head the ball went in. Yet unsurprisingly the goal was ruled out, despite the fact that - to those behind the goal - it looked as though defender had interfered with goalkeeper.

Spot the ball...

And so the break was reached with no goals for all of Kingstonian's pressure, but they had so out-played Hayes in the first half that nobody doubted that the deserved goal would come in the second half. Yet for some reason, the second period started off with both teams in something of a lackadaisical mood. The momentum which had been built up by K's just before the interval had abated, and Hayes now looked as though they would happily settle for a point.

It was the visitors who had the better of the opening exchanges though, as K's tried and failed to regain the initiative. Paul Holsgrove went close when he sent a free-kick not far wide from twenty yards, and Lance Key was called upon to turn away a Kevin Warner header after he had beaten Max Hustwick to an Anton Innocent cross.

The introduction of Ronnie Green for the ineffective Greg Ball did little to help matters, with Tim Sills having the best chance for K's when he shrugged off Holsgrove and fired wide, only for the referee to say that his shrug had been too violent, awarding the free-kick to Hayes.

Yet the goal did finally come for the home side, after a good two or three minutes when the first-half performance was reproduced. Jamie Leacock crossed from the right, the ball was turned back out to Liam Collins who crossed to the far post. Both Hayes' central defenders missed the ball, and as it dropped to Wingfield there was the merest suggestion of his left arm helping the ball to the ground. No complaints were made though, and Wingfield looked in no mood to listen anyway as he smashed the ball between Andrews' right foot and right post from a tight angle to make it one nil.

'your hair smells so beautiful...'

Photo: Lee Earle / The Non-League PaperYet as time ticked on it seemed less and less likely that one goal would be enough. Neil Lampton came on for his debut in place of Collins, and Mark Jones replaced the goalscorer, but neither had much of an impact on proceedings. Indeed it was the visitors who were by now enjoying the lion's share of the possession, and it was the K's defence who were over-employed.

The inevitable equaliser came with just two minutes left, but was no less deserved for that. Craig Lewington gave away a needless free-kick when he grabbed the ball some thirty yards from goal, and a quick pass found substitute Dean Clark on the edge of the area. His pass forwards took the slightest of deflections, leaving Flitter and Hustwick stranded as Jarvis burst through to beat Lance Key from some twelve yards out.

After the total domination that was the first half, it was slightly galling to come away from this match with just one point. Yet Hayes never gave up, were the better side for the last twenty minutes and fully deserved their equaliser. There were some good performances from the Kingstonian side - notably in Matt Flitter and Craig Lewington - but one can't help but feel that this match should have been done and dusted by half time.

Sat 7th Sep 2002
Kingsmeadow Stadium
Isthmian League Premier
1Lance Key
2Jamie Leacock
3Sean ThurgoodCautioned
4Max Hustwick
5Matt Flitter
6Craig Lewington
7Liam Collins15
8Dave Clarke
9Tim Sills
10Greg Ball12
11Phil Wingfield16
12Ronnie Green10
13Matt Sargeant
14Julian Sills
15Neil Lampton7
16Mark Jones11
Man of the Match
Craig Lewington
Craig Lewington
Match Report By
Gary Ekins