West Kent Sunday League News Report – Sunday 2nd December 2018

Heavy rain resulting in unfit pitches cut the programme by about half, but in the games that did go ahead an astonishing 47 goals were scored at an average of 9.4 per game. There were no League games scheduled for Divisions One and Two.

WKSFL Senior Cup

Two games went ahead in Group 1 and there was the one sensible score of the morning at Westcombe Park, where Division Two hosts Petts Wood Old Boys gave good account of themselves, but lost 2-1 to visitors and League leaders Simla.

Simla started the better team, keeping possession and threatening the Petts Wood goal but most shots were off target. Simla eventually scored through Greg Nicholson and continued to put pressure on Petts Wood defence. Then Petts Wood started to play more confidently. They won a corner which was poorly defended by Simla. The ball was well struck by Bill Parkinson for the equaliser. This seemed to spur on Petts Wood, who played some good football up to half time.

The second half was more of the same, with Simla creating chances but not able to score. Petts Wood counter attacking and having their own chances. Simla scored a second goal from a corner, but it was a messy affair with the ball bobbling about between both teams and eventually crossing the line. The goal was claimed by Ian Parsons.
Petts Wood didn't give up, they kept trying for an equaliser. Then it looked to be all over when Simla were awarded a penalty, but the shot was superbly saved by the Petts Wood keeper.

The last ten minutes were a bit frantic with both teams having chances but at the final whistle it was Simla who won  2  -  1. Simla say ''all credit to Petts Wood today who played well and made it hard work''

The game went ahead at the Memorial Ground in Brenchley where visitors Dormansland Rockets made the long trip home winners by seven points to five. Or was it goals? Rockets' seven included two hat-tricks, one by Rich Wetton (his fourth of the season) and the other by TJ Stead. Nick Elwood scored the other. Brenchley's goals were scored by five different players, Dave Hartfield, Mike Williams, Olly Platt, Dan Connolly and Michel van Oorschot. As you can see from the table below, this group is pretty open. Remember that the top four will qualify for the second round.

West Kent Sunday League Senior Cup Group 1
Pos Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Artois United 4 3 0 1 26 10 16 9
2 Simla 3 3 0 0 17 5 12 9
3 Green Lane 4 2 0 2 14 12 2 6
4 Paddock Wood 4 2 0 2 10 9 1 6
5 Petts Wood OB 5 2 0 3 7 17 -10 6
6 Dormansland Rockets 2 1 0 1 9 10 -1 3
7 Brenchley 5 1 0 4 14 20 -6 3
8 Crowborough Town 3 1 0 2 5 19 -14 3

In Group 2 just the one game went ahead, thanks to a last minute switch of ground. In that one, Speldhurst Rangers threw the group pretty wide open by bearing Armada 4-3.

Firstly credit to both sides for agreeing to switch the game to Armada’s ground after Speldhurst was unplayable.

A tight first half saw Armada take an early through Harry Tampsett. The game then settled into a scrappy affair, with Rangers formation and long throws applying pressure on the Armada back four. But to no avail, the score remained one-nil to Armada at half time.

Armada were poor starting the second half. Speldhurst took advantage with three quick goals. The first  and the equaliser came when a Josh Fermor cross was inadvertently deflected off two Armada defenders into their goal. Speldhurst rallied and were soon two-one up when Armada failed to defend a long throw, which Josh Fermor chested into a volley and hit it into the roof of the net. Rangers were in dreamland when a Barney Mellors free kick was missed by defenders and attackers and bounced into the corner of the goal to make it 3-1. This woke Armada up and they battered Speldhurst. Two goals by Tom Cobb levelled things. The first came when he latched onto a good through ball and slotted calmly into the corner. The second had an assist from a bobble that took the ball over 'keeper Liam Baldwin's rush out of goal.

It felt ominous for Speldhurst, who were tiring against a superior opposition, but they held out against multiple attacks.  Very good goal keeping from Baldwin, the post, the bar, and a blatant penalty not awarded, all worked against Armada and kept it at 3-3. Then a lovely cross field ball from Joe Hearndon was beautifully taken down by Josh Fermor with the outside of the boot, he then turned back nutmegging an Armada defender before sliding the ball into the bottom corner from twelve yards. It was fantastic touch and finish

An entertaining game in tough conditions. Armada give congratulations to Speldhurst. Well played.

West Kent Sunday League Senior Cup Group 2
Pos Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 Armada 4 3 0 1 17 11 6 9
2 Pembury Sunday 3 2 1 0 9 4 5 7
3 Cassidy's Phoenix 4 2 0 2 19 10 9 6
4 Speldhurst Rangers 5 2 0 3 11 27 -16 6
5 St John's Yard 3 1 1 1 14 11 3 4
6 Green Street Blues 2 1 0 1 5 3 2 3
7 Royal Oak 3 1 0 2 8 12 -4 3
8 Insulators 2 0 0 2 0 5 -5 0

Division Three

Silly season? Two games played, 23 goals scored!

Biggin Hill maintained their recent improvement, making it three games without defeat in a four-all draw at Ticehurst Village. The Hill have now drawn three of their four away games in the League, while Ticehurst Village have won only once in their last four outings. The hosts have now recorded sixteen different goalscorers this season, not counting Mr OG. That might show how difficult it is to get the same lot out of bed on a Sunday morning! Scorers this week for the Village were Jason Marsh with two, Rob Guile and an own goal. For the visitors, Steve Visser, Matt Bishop, Scott Gaitsin and an own goal.

In the other game, FC Grinstead notched up their eighth win in as many league games with a 9-6 (yes, really) win at Tonbridge Origin.

 Having played each other three times already this season, both teams were quite familiar with one another. But it was FCG who made it three for three against Origin. 
The game started well for Origin as they went 1-0 up inside the first 20 minutes beating the 'keeper with a ball across the six yard box for a simple tap in by Ben Holder. (FCG were on their eighth keeper this season. Is this a record?)

FCG soon made a tactical substitution, bringing on Freddie Webb and within minutes he grabbed the equaliser. Josh Dove, Micky Neatherway and Joe Moulding all grabbed  one each making it 4-1 at half time.

With the game looking dead and buried, Origin pulled back two quick goals at the start of the second half while putting FCG on the back foot. With some great play from the back, FCG soon produced another through Webb making it 5-3.

The last thirty minutes was very back and forth, with both teams taking it in turns to score. Lee Warbey came off the bench to grab two goals for Grinstead, with Neatherway getting his second and Webb securing a well deserved hat-trick. The game ended 9-6 with the full roster of Origin's scorers being Holder, Jonny Barber, Chris Gregory with two, Duncan Ibbotson and Will Ashenden.

West Kent Sunday League Division Three
Pos Team P W D L F A GD Pts
1 FC Grinstead 8 8 0 0 40 15 25 24
2 Ticehurst Village 10 5 3 2 36 28 8 18
3 TW Ridgewaye 5 4 1 0 32 14 18 13
4 Goudhurst United 8 4 1 3 27 25 2 13
5 Yalding & Laddingford 8 4 0 4 24 29 -5 12
6 Tonbridge Origin 9 3 1 5 32 29 3 10
7 Biggin Hill JFC 8 1 3 4 20 29 -9 6
8 Tonbridge United 8 0 2 6 11 34 -23 2
9 Insulators Reserves 6 0 1 5 9 28 -19 1

I took a look at the goalscoring lists having spotted that Ticehurst have sixteen different scorers so far. For those of you who like to know such things, Armada have fifteen different goalscorers this season (there are eighty-six in all in Division One), while in Division Two Insulators have the highest number of twelve. Sixty-eight different players have scored in Division Two and ninety-seven in Division Three.

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