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Kingstonian 0-3 Maidstone United

Anyone who had witnessed K's recent 2-0 victory over Molesey could be forgiven for thinking that the hoops had possibly turned a corner in an otherwise disappointing run of form. But the reality was that Maidstone were definitely the form favorites for this pre-Christmas clash. Kingstonian had won just one from their last nine, whereas Maidstone had eight points from their last four games.

And so the pressure was laid out for Stuart McIntyre and a strong performance was definitely required. Sadly for the home fans, though less so for the impressive number of Stones travelling supporters, Kingstonian produced one of their most lacklustre efforts of recent times. A well saved effort from Lee in the first half was all they had to show for an otherwise demoralising defeat.

Things looked bad for Kingstonian when it seemed Maidstone's Nick Heeley had opened the scoring just two minutes in. Luckily for the home side the linesman ruled offside but this was just one reprieve in a comprehensive onslaught of the K's net in the first half. Heeley came close again minutes later but Asher Hudson managed to clear off the line.

A brief spate of first half attacks from K's was sourced predominantly from a patch of weak kicking by Stones keeper Pat Mullin. Each half-hearted clearance seemed to produce a cross from either Symes or Drewett, but neither Amoako nor Leworthy could get onto any of them. Jarvis had a headed effort, but it did little to test Mullin, who, in spite of his kicking, looked comfortable in front of goal.

In the end, it took just 22 minutes before Maidstone eventually broke what could be generously described as the deadlock. Heeley was again instrumental, his run producing an strong effort, which Garrard was only able to push back out to the feet of Simon Austin, who had half the goal to shoot at, with Garrard still on the floor.

If Kingstonian's heads hadn't already started to drop, they certainly did ten minutes later when the Austin/Heeley double act was reversed. Austin put a low cross straight through the box to the feet of Heeley at the far post who blasted home from a mere unmarked two yards out.

The glimmer of hope flashed past painfully briefly for the home support, as an excellent low drive accross goal from Lee looked certain to nestle into the bottom corner. Mullin made little more than finger tip contact, but it was enough to tip the ball onto the post and out for a corner.

The final blow was delivered on the stroke of half time. A long throw was flicked on to Austin, who struck across the face of Garrard to seal Kingstonian's fate.

It's not very often teams come back from 3-0 at half time, but on this occasion the curious variation on the theme was that both sides stopped playing. And so it was that the second half produced little to entertain fans or neutrals. All that marked an otherwise tedious 45 minutes of football was yet more bad news for Kingstonian, with the dismissal of substitute Tommy Moorhouse.

It is always a shame when a good player struggles with his temperament, and this latest incident shows Moorhouse needs to work on his. Whilst the straight red for the late tackle was arguably harsh, the ref was probably making up for his curious decision to not even issuing a cauting to Moorhouse for a previous altercation just minutes earlier.

Saturday 23rd December 2006
(Maidstone United H)
Julian Sills interview
[WMA file - 9:26 - 2,268Kb]

Sat 23rd Dec 2006
Kingsmeadow Stadium
Isthmian League Division One South
Maidstone United3
1Luke Garrard
2Asher HudsonCautioned
3Steve SymesCautioned
4Craig Lewington
5Julian Sills
6Jamie JarvisCautioned
7Glenn Boosey12
8Gary Drewett
9David Leworthy
10Adolph Amoako16
11Martyn Lee
12Tommy MoorhouseSent Off7
14Scott Corbett
15Stuart Reeks
16Niall Connery10
17Stephen Windegaard
Match Report By
Kevin O'Connor