Sunday, 27 March 2011

Tunbridge Wells 3 v 0 Holmesdale

Tuesday 22nd March 2011
Kent League Premier Division
Culverden Stadium, Tunbridge Wells
Admission: £6.00
Programme: £1.50
Attendance: 87
Match Rating: 3

Rare enthusiasm during the working day to go to a football match that evening - probably buoyed by the dry, sunny weather - encouraged me to head to the Culverden Stadium for the first time this season for this Kent League game between Tunbridge Wells and Holmesdale.

Description and photos of Culverden Stadium - during daytime - can be found from one of my previous visits to the ground . As for this season's programme, a very reasonable effort with plenty to read and plenty of stats - as it needs to have, with an excessive price of £1.50.

This was yet another game where there is now little left to play for for either team this season, with Tunbridge Wells in eighth place in the 16 team league, but with Holmesdale down in 13th place, only three points ahead of bottom place Sporting Bengal - but as there is no relegation from the Kent League, the only motivating factor left for Holmesdale is to finish as high as possible in the league. Surprisingly, considering this is late March, tonight was the first time the two teams had met in the league this season, although earlier in the month, they met at the Culverden Stadium in the Kent Senior Trophy, with Tunbridge Wells edging a tense semi-final by 1-0, so tonight was the chance for revenge for Holmesdale..

The first half was, for the most part, a forgettable affair, a midfield battle with neither goalkeeper having a shot to save until a couple of minutes before half time, when Tunbridge Wells really should have scored, having three shots blocked in quick succession. The second half continued in a similar vein until, out of nowhere, Tunbridge Wells scored three times in the space of just six minutes to win the game. First, on 61 minutes, Keelan Mooney scored a brilliant individual goal, bustling his way from far out, brushing off several defenders before cooly sidefooting and slotting the ball past the keeper. Number two came just two minutes when Andy Boyle hooked home through a crowd of players after a corner, and the third came on 66 minutes when Drew Crush met a corner ball with a backward looping header from 10 yards out over the keeper. This ended the game as a contest as the visitors looked shell-shocked although to their credit they did battle gamely on. As the second half wore on, the game more and more petered out, and Tunbridge Wells claimed a win they just about deserved although the scorelne hugely flattered them.

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