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Kingstonian 2-1 Cray Wanderers

Simon Huckle's second half goal on Saturday secured all three points to keep up the pressure on the play-off positions in a close battle for the remaining three places.

With five points covering now covering from third to ninth spots and 12 points to play for, this win for Kingstonian still keeps the door open for a second successive crack at promotion this way.

10 yards out Huckle picked up the ball on the half volley and hit it past the Cray goalkeeper Dave King in the 54th minute after Tom Bird's cross from the left.

Earlier Tom Hutchinson had headed Kingstonian into the lead just after the quarter hour as he flicked it across the mouth of the goal and beyond the keeper's reach.

This was cancelled out 16 minutes later after poor defending left Rob Tolfrey exposed in a half that the play-off chasing visitors held the upper hand.

From the start defender Alex Bentley crossed a seemingly innocuous ball which, with a gaggle of players around him ready to pounce, meant Tolfrey was forced into a brave save in the air. Minutes later Laurent Hamici saw his low shot from 25 yards out taken by Tolfrey again. And then a cross to Ross Lover had to be palmed out and away again by Tolfrey.

And then almost against the tides of play, Kingstonian found themselves at the other end with Gary MacDonald over the ball for a free kick. His kick was glanced on in the area by Hutchinson and into the back of the net.

Cray were stunned and were unable to recover from this setback quickly as both teams settled down into a midfield battle and it was not until the half hour that Cray began to up their game sufficiently to attack. A throw-in from Bentley found its way into the area and a static defence forced Tolfrey into a save as he could only parry the ball away. Danny Phillips followed up from 10 yards out to score.

Then twice Paul Vines was bought down as two separate clashes of heads with opponents saw him receiving treatment although he was able to continue both times.

The second half saw Mo Harkin come off within two minutes as Dean Lodge replaced him. Subsequently it came out that he was carrying an injury at half-time but had insisted in playing on.

Within minutes Huckle restored the lead with his goal and Kingstonian began to assert some authority on the game. On the hour Vines saw his cross cut out by a defender allowing King to gather the ball easily.

Bobby Traynor then came on for Allan Tait before Bird came in from the left before shooting wide of the upright.

However the visitors were not finished and goal scorer Hutchinson became goal keeper as he cleared off the line from a close range header in the 74th minute. And at the other end Sam Clayton shot over after gaining a loose ball.

And with the game approaching the end, first Vines was denied a penalty as he seemed to be pushed over in the area before he then hit a cross into the ground which hit the right post. A minute later Lodge tried a cheeky looping shot which hit the top of the bar from above 20 yards out.

Vines was replaced with Antonio Gonella in the 87th minute. In injury time he provided a cross from the right to Lodge who could only shoot to the right and wide.

While riding their luck a few times Kingstonian have kept the slender chance alive of extending the season beyond four more matches while consigning Cray to another season in the division.

Sat 9th Apr 2011
Kingsmeadow Stadium
Isthmian League Premier
Hutchinson, Huckle
Cray Wanderers1
1Rob Tolfrey
2Max Hustwick
3Tom Bird
4Gary MacDonald
5Tom Hutchinson
6Simon Huckle
7Bashiru Alimi
8Allan Tait12
9Paul Vines16
10Mo Harkin14
11Sam ClaytonCautioned
12Bobby Traynor8
14Dean Lodge10
15Inaki Ordono
16Antonio Gonnella9
17Nic Taylor
Match Report By
Michael Underwood