Enfield Town match report
match report by James Maw
A lot has happened since Kingstonian’s previous away win in the Isthmian Premier League.
In the 287 days between last season’s 2-1 win at Cray Wanderers and Saturday’s trip to Enfield Town, Argentina have won the World Cup, England’s women have won the Euros, and Dorking Wanderers have somehow won the Surrey Senior Cup. There have been two changes of Prime Minister (not to mention Kingstonian manager), and one change of monarch.
All of which goes some way to explaining why Kingstonian fans and players celebrated hard in the north London rain after a battling first league win since early November, and a first win on the road since March 2022.
After such a testing run of results away from home, K’s could have been forgiven for starting a game away to a promotion-chasing side with caution, but Spencer Knight’s side set off on the front foot.
When Lee Lewis slipped in Great Evans on 15 minutes, it looked as though we could be set for an early lead. However Evans blasted his shot straight at Enfield keeper Nathan McDonald.
Fortunately for Evans and Kingstonian, there was a chance to atone just minutes later.
The brilliant Joe Boachie was fouled on the edge of the D, and Evans struck home a low free-kick that slipped through the fingers of McDonald and into the bottom corner.
Rather than sit back and invite pressure, K’s continued to knock the ball around threateningly in the opposition half, although they created relatively few clear-cut chances once they’d gone ahead.
This was a composed, assured performance from back to front with recent recruits Danny Dudley and O'Shane Stewart both impressive.
Just as the end seemed in sight came the biggest shock of all - eight minutes additional time.
The number on the fourth official’s board seemed to surprise everyone - including Enfield’s PA announcer. The officials were presumably following FIFA’s bonkers World Cup stoppage time diktat, as there were very few stoppages in the second period and time wasting was at a minimum (but we would say that, wouldn’t we?)
Fortunately, despite Enfield hitting the crossbar a couple of times, K’s were actually fairly composed in the final minutes of the match, and held on for a crucial win.
Speaking on Sunday in an interview for Kingstonian’s YouTube channel, Knight underlined his happiness that the team had been able to execute the tactical masterplan to perfection.
“I think perhaps Enfield underestimated us and didn't prepare for us as well as we prepared for them,” said Knight.
“Enfield are a basic football team, and I mean that in a respectful way - they're not expansive, they're quite direct. They've got a way of playing that is successful but it's a way of playing that we know all about and as a management team we prepared for it all week.
We came into the game playing slightly differently, which I think maybe surprised them. If you can deal with that directness, they run out of ideas pretty quickly. So we knew that if we could do that we would have an opportunity to win the game."
Enfield Town: Nathan McDonald, Juevan Spencer, Joseph Payne, Scott Thomas, Anthony Wordworth, Dequane Wilson-Braithwaite, James Dayton, Chez Isaac, Sam Youngs, Marcus Wyllie, Adam Cunnington.
Subs: Lewis Taaffe (for James Dayton, 37m), Andre Coker, Lyle Della-Verde (for Scott Thomas, 66m), Joshua Okotcha (for Andy Wordworth, 17m), Adi Connolly.
Kingstonian: Rob Tolfrey, Dwight Pascal, Chevron McLean, Declan Skura, Danny Dudley, Tyrese Owen, Lee Lewis, O'Shane Stewart, Great Evans, Joe Boachie, Jake Eales.
Subs: Jacob Bancroft (for Great Evans, 78m), Isaiah Jones (for Dwight Pascal, 85m), Iker Noguera Leon, Sean Bonnett-Johnson (for Joe Boachie, 87m), Joshua Ogunseye.
Goal scorer: Great Evans (24m, 0-1)