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Kingstonian 1
Taylor (84')
0 Thurrock

Fleet of foot Taylor nets three Points

Kingstonian claimed all three points in a close encounter with relegation threatened Thurrock, courtesy of an eighty third minute goal from Lewis Taylor.

No one would have left Kingsmeadow believing they had seen a classic as a dry and bouncy pitch contributed to a match that was long on endeavour but desperately short on quality.

Both sides struggled to exert any sort of control in a dour first half and barely contrived to create a couple of half chances, let alone a clear cut one. The only excitement came in the forty second minute as Bird did well to create space for a cross which looked certain to be buried by Vines, however he completely missed the ball as he appeared to be pushed in the back. This was not how Killroy-Silk look-a-like referee Georgiou saw matters though.

Aaron Goode came on at the start of the second half to replace a presumably injured Sweeney and it was not long before both managers decided to ring changes with multiple substitutions, which did bring an improvement to the game.

Thurrock very nearly took the lead in the fifty seventh minute after Georgiou had inexplicably awarded a free kick on the edge of the area following a well timed tackle from Goode where he clearly won the ball. Substitute Hazelwood narrowly missed from 20 yards with Bragg well beaten. Twenty minutes later another Thurrock substitute, Dan Jones, missed the best chance of the game to date. Danny Green cleverly nicked the ball off Goode as he tried to shepherd it out of play and his cross was met by Jones, but with the goal gaping in front of him, he managed to contrive to hit the cross bar.

This to prove to be a very expensive miss as five minutes later Kingstonian took the lead. Jamil Okai did well to make space to get a shot away from the edge of the area. His fiercely struck effort was blocked by keeper Viner, but fell nicely for Taylor following in, who had the simple task of putting the ball into an open goal. It was at least just reward for Taylor who had made well timed runs from midfield all game.

The final action of the game saw Thurrock centre half Matt Turpin receive his marching orders for a second yellow. It seemed a harsh decision but served to sum up Thurrock's luck on the day.

This was a close match where both sides battled hard but struggled to control the constantly high bouncing ball on a pitch that looked desperately liked it needed a good watering. The only consistent quality came from Thurrock's Danny Green who was a constant threat all game. However it was one piece of skill the fast improving Okai that ultimately separated the two sides.

Report: Peter Allan

Published Wednesday 12th September 2018