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Bedford Town 0-0 Kingstonian

K's travelled to Bedfordshire hoping to improve upon last years show at The Eyrie, where skipper Peter Barnsby's dismissal was compounded by a comfortable winning margin for the home side.

The side showed just a single change from that which suffered defeat in the Bank Holiday derby against Sutton, with Craig Lewington coming in for Liam Collins in a slightly reshuffled midfield. A relief to the travelling fans, not to mention the K's defence, was the absence of the recently-departed former Manchester United (and Kingstonian) man Graeme Tomlinson from the Bedford lineup.

The opening chance of the match was headed over the crossbar by Bedford's Darren Lynch, but it was the first action of note at the other end that proved to be the talking point of the game.

Stafford Browne broke down the middle and was pulling clear of marker Liam Folds before the centre back tangled with Browne, ensuring that both men fell to the ground. The free kick was instantly awarded, but the expected disciplinary action delayed as Folds received lengthy treatment for his troubles. Referee, however, failed to produce a card and allowed Folds to take his place in the wall; the free kick was ultimately taken with little success.

'10 sit-ups will be punishment enough...'

With a quarter of an hour gone, Lance Key elected not to come off his line for a dangerous cross and so a clear chance opened for Lynch, whose header was then superbly saved by Key.

The momentum of play swinging in an increasingly tactical battle, K's had the next spell of attacking play, sparked by some good work by captain Mark Beard down the left. Passing to Billy Mead, the ensuing cross was met by a defensive head to send it just wide of the far post with Stafford Browne in attendance.

Liam Collins then forged an opening for himself and struck just wide of the target, clipping a sweetly struck effort just past the frame of the goal.

A cross

The deadlock seemed to be broken with half time approaching. Daniel French drove a shot low across Key into the bottom corner of the net before having his effort disallowed by the linesman's flag. The offence was not clear but important nonetheless as the scoreline remained blank going into the break.

The start of the second period saw Grant Payne play in Bashiru Alimi, though the midfielder's close range strike was not angled well enough to beat home 'keeper Ian Brown.

Substitute Josh Francois, making his senior debut for the club, turned well and passed to Stafford Browne before the ball was moved on to Mark Beard to float in a cross that cut goalkeeper and defender out of the frame, only for Alimi to head over what was effectively an open goal.

Darren Lynch fired over when presented with a chance at the other end before a free kick sent in by French was tipped away by Key. The final chance of the game fell to Lynch, though once again Key was able to repel the danger, this time saving down low to his right post.

The game, highlighted by a few moments of action, was a rather boring affair, but Bedford is not one of the easier places to visit in the league and a solid point can be reflected upon.

Sat 30th Aug 2003
The Eyrie
Isthmian League Premier
Bedford Town0
1Lance Key
2Stephen Broad12
3Scott Smith
4Matt Elverson
5Max Hustwick
6Mark Beard
7Craig LewingtonCautioned16
8Billy Mead
9Grant Payne14
10Stafford Browne
11Bashiru AlimiCautioned
12Liam Collins2
13Trevor Jones
14Josh Francois9
15Mark Jones
16Greg Ball7
Match Report By
Ali Kazemi