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Bishop's Stortford 2-1 Kingstonian

Kingstonian travelled to Bishop's Stortford's Woodside Park ground looking to end a run of six league matches without a win on their travels. New loan-signing Stuart Booth made his first start at right-back, but it was once again the players at the other end of the field who must take the lion's share of the blame for the failure to pick up points.

Although Kingstonian started well, the first attack worthy of note saw the home side take a fifth minute lead. A deep cross from Glen Southam on the left flew over goalkeeper Lance Key and struck his far post. The ball bounced back across goal and James Bunn had the simple task of tapping home from three yards out.

Matt Pattison on just his fourth appearance for K's was showing his more senior team-mates the desire required to get something from the game, and his run brought a free-kick just outside the penalty area. Scott Steele though blasted the chance over Micky Desborough's bar.

Pattison was obviously not impressed, because when Dave Rainford brought down Bashiru Alimi outside the box five minutes later, it was the youngster who took responsibility. His right-footed effort cleared the three-man Stortford defensive wall and squeezed under Desborough's diving body to tie the score at one-one.

It was the loan signing from Farnborough who again crafted a fine chance for the visitors, when he played in Grant Payne. The striker was clean through for a run at Desborough's goal, but after delaying slightly, his shot was kicked away by the keeper's right foot.

Four minute's later and the missed opportunity took on greater significance when Stortford regained the lead. Bunn played a good ball through the Kingstonian defence and Southam needed no more prompting, sending the ball past Lance Key to regain the lead for his side.

Yet K's didn't roll over. Five minutes before the break, a fine move involving all five midfield players saw Bashiru Alimi make tracks into the penalty area. Grant Cooper challenged and was adjudged to have fouled him giving Steele the opportunity to restore parity from the spot. Desborough guessed the wrong way, but Steele's spot-kick struck the left-hand post and rebounded back into play.

Bad news in the post

A double change at half-time saw Stafford Browne and Chris Nurse introduced, but the first chance of the half fell to the impressive Southam, who shot narrowly wide from the edge of the area. Not long afterwards, the same player forced a fine save from Key when he shot left-footed from twenty yards, only for the K's custodian to turn the ball aside.

The final chance of the match fell to another K's substitute - Aaron Gilbert. A good ball through from Browne saw the youngster round Darren Wiltshire, only to get his attempted chipped shot wrong with Desborough stranded on the edge of his area.

And so another defeat, as K's start on their most difficult month of the season. Matt Pattison certainly came out of this game with credit, but it was difficult to say the same of anybody else.

Sat 7th Feb 2004
Woodside Park
Isthmian League Premier
Bishop's Stortford2
1Lance Key
2Stuart Booth14
3Scott Smith
4Stephen Broad
5Max Hustwick
6Liam Collins
7Craig Lewington
8Matt Pattison
9Scott Steele16
10Grant Payne15
11Bashiru Alimi
12Martyn Williams
14Chris NurseCautioned2
15Aaron Gilbert10
16Stafford Browne9
Match Report By
Gary Ekins