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Kingstonian 2-0 Croydon Athletic

This was a game in the Bryco Cup Second Round. "Don't Miss It" says the obligatory advertising hoarding at the Kingsmeadow Stadium. An attendance of 149 would indicate that most Ks supporters didn't want to pay heed to that advice. Although strangely it was one of the higher attendances in a competition that most people reckon should be sponsored by Walt Disney.

Truth be told, this is an important competition, but only if you're still in it. After a workmanlike performance against Croydon Athletic, the hooped ones from Jack Goodchild Way are still in the Bryco Cup. This game always had the air of potential banana skin smeared all over it, especially with home form not being what is required for the Ks. Once the first goal went into the net, however, the identity of winners of this match was never really in doubt.

After a slow start from both teams, the Ks had the first chance of this brief encounter in the fifteenth minute when a cross by Liam Collins found Chris Bangura (making his first Ks' start) in the area, but his header slammed into the ground and bounced at a nice height for Rams' goalkeeper Robert Frankland to collect.

Four minutes later, Athletic had their first decent attack of the match, ending with a nice looping shot from Scott Todd, which temporarily had Lance Key in strife. However, the big Ks' custodian was able to scramble back and tip the ball over the bar. The resulting corner wasn't worth writing about, so I won't.

The home team scored their first goal in the 24th minute. A good run down the right by Stephen Broad ended with him shooting at goal. It may or may not have been flying across the face of the penalty area for a goal kick, but Croydon Athletic's James Hall ended any possible debate by guiding the ball home past a stranded Frankland with accurate accidental aplomb.

The rest of the first half was quiet, on and off the field. With six minutes left in the opening stanza, Key was effective at stopping a Dean Davenport long shot from a free kick, whilst four minutes later, the Rams were cursing when Todd crossed brilliantly into the box, but it just evaded the unfortunate Hall, who was centimetres away from scoring his second of the game.

The second half was much of the same, as the Ks eased their way into the Third Round of a competition in which the quarter-finals were reached last season.

Twelve minutes into said half, the Ks won a free kick, which was taken by the excellent on the night Anthony Savage. He slipped slightly on taking the kick, which turned out to sail past substitute goalkeeper Jamie Williams, but clipped the bar and went over.

The killer second goal came twenty minutes into the second half. A long throw in from Stephen Broad found Grant Payne inside the penalty area. Given loads of time, he was able to turn well and fire a first time shot past Williams and into the net. The Athletic goalkeeper possibly could have saved the shot, but it doesn't matter a jot, the scoreboard now would have read 2-0 if one had ever been erected.

Payne came close to doubling his personal tally for the evening. An excellent cross into the box by Savage found Payne with his back to goal. Some more reasonably inattentive defending meant he had time to chest the ball down, turn and shot at goal, but the goal went just over the bar. This was arguably the move of the game and deserved better than it got.

So, really, that was that. Three wins out of three against Croydon Athletic, the first shut-out against them (this writer been watching too much NFL) and a place in Round Three of the Isthmian League Cup, to give this tournament its proper name. And, because the Ks are still in it, it's a very important competition!

Tue 18th Nov 2003
Kingsmeadow Stadium
Isthmian League Cup 2nd round
OG, Payne
Croydon Athletic0
1Lance Key
2Stephen Broad
3Liam GarmanCautioned14
4Matt Elverson
5Max Hustwick
6Liam Collins15
7Craig Lewington
8Bashiru Alimi
9Grant Payne
10Chris BanguraCautioned12
11Anthony SavageCautioned
12Stafford Browne10
14Josh Francois3
15Dave Timothy6
16Aaron Gilbert
17Adrian Jones
Match Report By
Robert Wooldridge