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Kingstonian 2-0 Cray Wanderers

Two first half goals saw Ks cruise beyond Cray and almost the final step for promotion in the first time in 11 years.

Huckle put in during the 15th minute from close range and then Max Hustwick's header in the 28th minute secured the three points in front of the bumper bank holiday crowd as Kingstonian played promotion rivals Cray at Kingsmeadow.

Kingstonian supporters cheers the team on
Photo: Chris Hatton - Kingstonian FC

After a week of publicity the best crowd in eight years came expectant for a win and league topping Ks soon found themselves under the cosh. First recent returnee Michael Power headed over then striker Leigh Bremner came down as he challenged Luke Garrard - all within the opening four minutes - but gradually the home side began to assert their title credentials.

Huckle however found the back of the net in the 15th minute via the far post after a header down into the ground by Carl Wilson-Denis.

Simon Huckle scores the first
Photo: Chris Hatton - Kingstonian FC

Minutes later Tommy Williams shot wide off a half volley and then a corner by Williams, off a Wilson-Denis shot parried behind by Glen Knight in goal, went wide. At the other end Simon Osborn was denied off the line.

But then almost immediately Hustwick headed in for the second goal as he picked up a diagonal cross-field ball and headed in to the near post as Knight reacted too slow.

Max Hustwick scores the second
Photo: Chris Hatton - Kingstonian FC

Cray looked to react but with the defence holding strong, the pressure built. In the 36th minute Adam Thompson denied Mark Willy's header five yards out and with Dean Lodge breaking away Jamie Wood bought him down.

Dean Lodge in action
Photo: Chris Hatton - Kingstonian FC

Lodge then crossed in from left to Wilson-Denis but without the purchase the ball went tamely wide. Minutes later from another free kick, Lodge looped beyond the far post after Huckle headed back into his path.

The second half once again saw an increasing rampant Lodge up the wing but in from the left he outstripped defenders and his own team. Then a similar break, again up the left, saw Wilson-Denis head into the back of the net as he overcame Willy, but Colin Lymer in the black shirt denied him and gave out a yellow card for a handball.

Carl Wilson-Denis sees his goal disallowed
Photo: Chris Hatton - Kingstonian FC

Carl Wilson-Denis sees his goal disallowed
Photo: Chris Hatton - Kingstonian FC

Kingstonian continued to press and the good drainage system at Kingsmeadow denied Bobby Traynor as his header down bounced well off the surface and over the bar. Then Williams was denied by the upright, followed by Huckle whose rebounded shot saw Williams this time shoot wide.

Another Cray substitution then saw Huckle concede a corner but Garrard palmed it way to Lodge from Jamie Kempster's corner. With minutes counting down and finger nails being gnawed manager Alan Dowson began to wind down the clock. First Liam Collins was off for NJ Lampton and then Craig Mullen came on for Wilson-Denis. But the game ended with Tryrone Sterling, on earlier for Steve Aris, head over; and then Richmond Kiss, also off the bench, shoot wide.

One more point in the last two games will guarantee promotion but on the evidence of this match promotion would have to be denied. While no classic attacking football, the team stepped up, not only in front of a large crowd, but in front of the pressure and expectancy around and won.

Kingstonian players after the game
Photo: Chris Hatton - Kingstonian FC

Kingstonian players after the game
Photo: Chris Hatton - Kingstonian FC

Mon 13th Apr 2009
Kingsmeadow Stadium
Isthmian League Division One South
Huckle, Hustwick
Cray Wanderers0
1Luke Garrard
2Jamie Beer
3Nick Rundell
4Adam ThompsonCautioned
5Max Hustwick
6Simon Huckle
7Liam Collins12
8Tommy Williams
9Bobby Traynor
10Carl Wilson-DenisCautioned16
11Dean Lodge
12Neil Lampton7
14Jon Coke
15Wayne Finnie
16Craig Mullen10
17Luke Naughton
Match Report By
Michael Underwood