Ashford’s Easter Monday fixture was the local derby away to Bedfont Sports and a 2-0 win for the Tangerines was the outcome.

On a pitch in an excellent condition and not too much wind to spoil proceedings, Ashford were able to play some excellent football at times, especially through the middle where Tommy Brunton was always prominent.  Indeed with both teams trying to play good football along with the warm sunshine, it was a pleasant occasion but it is fair to say that Ashford held the upper hand for much of the game.

That said, Bedfont defended well against the constant probing from their visitors and conceded just the one goal before half-time.  It came from the ever reliable Dan Fleming who has now scored in each of his last four matches.  The goal resulted from a misplaced pass by a Bedfont defender, which put Jack Beadle in possession.  His first effort was blocked but, showing great dexterity, he got on to the rebound and crossed low for Fleming to confidently stroke the ball into the corner of the net.

Samad Kazi then produced the run of the half advancing down the left flank with incredible pace going past three defenders but he then opted to shoot rather than pass to Fleming who looked poised to score again and Josh Richardson in the Bedfont goal was equal to the effort.

Ashford seemed right back on form though after failing to beat Knaphill on Saturday but there was concern at half-time amongst supporters that their levels of possession had not led to a higher tally, and that concern was shown to be correct when Sports enjoyed their first meaningful attack of the second period. a fierce cross shot whistling past Tyler Tobin’s goal.

Indeed the home side had more of the ball in the second half than they had in the first but generally only seemed to have one man up front most of the time and Ashford coped without undue alarm, always looking dangerous themselves.  Nevertheless, the goal that finally clinched the three points did not arrive until the 84th minute and it was fitting that Ashford “man of the match” Mitchal Gough should have a hand in it.  He had been coming up late and wide for corners, rarely being picked up, and eventually he got on the end of an inswinging effort from Beadle and nodded it back for the lively Fleming to sweep home at the far post.

Following the other results, which saw Molesey losing their second match in a row, Camberley are now the clear favourites to win the championship.  Ashford, of course, go to Camberley on Saturday, but whatever happens now, Ashford are now virtually guaranteed to finish in the top four at the very least, which after the trials and tribulations of last season, when little went right, is no mean achievement.  A big well done to our Management and Players for turning matters around when I am sure that most of us would have settled for doing no more than holding our own.

Don’t forget the Race Night this Friday, from 7.30 p.m. onwards, in the Club, everyone welcome.