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Maidstone United 2-1 Kingstonian

A week after scoring four goals against a table-propping Godalming Town, Kingstonian were bought down to earth in a battling performance against the team at the top end.

With Maidstone Town potentially going up on the day, the home side were looking for a win and a win they got in spite of the strong defending by the visitors under a baking sun. A measure of how much the team put in was the downhearted reaction of the team at the end of the match, as many of the players looked like they had lost a cup final rather than a game.

An equalising goal in the first minute of the second half from another own-goal only sought to galvanise Maidstone, who had taken the lead in the 29th minute, and most of the second half was spent defending.

The Kingstonian goal came with Neil Lampton, on from the start, on the right squaring to Bobby Traynor, who was unable to keep it as it carried on to the right and with Simon Huckle beginning to come in on from the left, defender Mario McNish slotted it along the ground from 15 yards out beyond United goalkeeper Pat Mullin.

Stones' opening goal came from a long free kick out on the right from Aaron Lacy who found Errison Ahwan after Luke Garrard had come a long way out to punch the ball amongst the crowded area and was then left stranded. Scott Corbett tried to make amends but could only help the ball further into the back of the net. With the sun in his eyes, Garrard had gifted a goal, having gone more than 6.5 hours without conceding.

The final goal came from Ryan Royston on 84 minutes from a header as Kingstonian seemed to have weathered a storm throughout the second half. A long shot from Sam Tydeman found Lynden Rowland's header who passed it back to Royston.

Yet it had been the visitors who had almost opened the scoring with Traynor running up the right in the first minute and then minutes later Huckle's long shot found the keeper and Wes Goggin, who came off worse as he was clattered in to by Mullin. A minute on the ground and then Goggin dusted himself off and carried on.

With David Shin on the right, more pressure was added on the opponents' goal area and then with Lampton kicking long up field Traynor was denied by the keeper again.

This woke up the host side who then started to put pressure on Garrard and the defence. Two corner kicks in the 17th minute were wasted, with the second one going straight across the goal mouth. Minutes later however Garrard bravely flung himself at Nick Hegley and denied him a certain scoring chance and then having stopped it, scrambled to grab hold of the ball with Hegley still present.

A minute later it was Ks that struck back, with Huckle shooting wide of the keeper and left stanchion, after Shin crossed in from the right to Goggin, whose pass to Traynor was dummied and left to Huckle to shoot.

Having scored the Stones then nearly doubled it after Mo Takaloo took a long ball from Tyndell on the left, and then shot wide.

With the equaliser in at the start of the second half, Kingston were then forced to spend most of the second half defending. First McNish, minutes after the own-goal picked up a loose flying ball in from the right after a corner kick and headed straight at the goal, only for Rundell to stop it on the line.

A quick free kick by Takaloo in the 68th minute looped over the still-forming wall from 25 yards out and into the centre of the net but the referee made Maidstone re-take it, as he was not ready himself. Tydeman retook it but the ball hit the wall this time. Tydeman also had a header go over after a throw-in several minutes later as Kingstonian were pegged firmly into their half.

However it was not all bad news for Ks, particularly after the final goal went in. Lampton, who earlier had shot over the top on the hour mark after taking a ball from Corbett, was instrumental in setting up a final chance for Traynor. His corner on the left found Traynor whose feet unfortunately were unable to control it and the ball slipped through.

Another free kick in injury time unfortunately almost backfired as substitute Alex Tiesse charged down the other end, only for Rundell to stop him with a well-timed tackle.

While Kingstonian can be proud of their strong defending and the fact that they had chances to score, it would be fair to say that some of time they fell back on the ball rather than bring it up and often kicked it high into the air.

Alex Dowson only used two substitutes, bringing teenager Dave Francis for Corbett and near the end replacing Shin, who began to find himself physically pushed off the ball by defenders, with Danny Summers.

Sat 21st Apr 2007
Central Park (Sittingbourne FC)
Isthmian League Division One South
Maidstone United2
1Luke Garrard
2Stuart Reeks
3Nick Rundell
4Tommy MoorhouseCautioned
5Simon Sobihy
6Scott CorbettCautioned14
7Neil Lampton
8Wes Goggin
9Bobby Traynor
10Simon HuckleCautioned
11David Shin15
12Glenn Boosey
14Dave Francis6
15Danny Summers11
16Joe Paris
17Lee Riddell
Match Report By
Michael Underwood