Ashford did enough on Tuesday evening to get themselves through to the 3rd Round (QF) of the Southern Combination Challenge Cup, beating Chessington & Hook United by three goals to one.  Ashford will now be away to CB Hounslow United on a date to be arranged.

The match was switched to Short Lane at Chessington’s request, as their own ground was waterlogged, and it was the visitors who took an early lead after just five minutes when a fierce effort gave Tyler Tobin no chance as it took a wicked deflection on its way into the net.  Chessington looked lively at that stage and with Ashford a little sluggish at the back on occasions, it would not have been  a major shock on the run of play if the visitors had not scored again.

Equilibrium was gradually restored though and Ashford levelled on 21 minutes, when an effort from Mark Bitmead was beaten out only for the lively Samad Kazi to firmly stroke the rebound home.

The match remained relatively even up to the halfway mark but the second period saw Ashford getting more on top and it was not a great surprise when, on the hour mark, Mitchal Gough headed spectacularly home from a corner kick.  Three minutes later Max Webb, later voted Ashford “man of the Match” struck home an effort that would definitely be a candidate for goal of the season as it rocketed home.  That effectively finished the visitors off as their earlier fluidity had gone, although to be fair there was no lack of effort from them.  They were also handicapped by an injury to their keeper Ian Hewitt, although he struggled on bravely, with no replacement available on the bench.

Ashford were content to retain much of the possession after that and gently see out the remaining 25 minutes despite the odd scare or two.  Referee Worrell had a quiet evening with everyone on their best behaviour with not a card in sight.  He certainly gave spectators their money’s worth as well, allowing a total of some 13 minutes stoppage time, equally spread over both halves.  It was hard to see where it all came from in the first half but there were two long stoppages for treatmennt to the visiting goalie in the second.