Whilst cries of “can we play you every week” would have been severely misplaced, Ashford actually completed what will certainly be their one and only double of the season on Tuesday night, winning by two goals to one at AFC Hayes.

Ben Murray had the team well and truly up for the match and it showed in the early stages as Ashford enjoyed the bulk of the possession.  There was just one change with Conor Moody returning to the team, in place of Jim Mann, on the bench, but in midfield, as Samad Kazi took the central striking role in partnership with Rhys Price.   It worked well tactically with Kazi’s pace a constant threat, allied to the craft and utter determination of both Price and Moody, although that compliment could be given to the whole team last night.

Ashford took the lead on 28 minutes when a through ball from Russell Canderton was latched onto by Kazi,  who outpaced his marker and despatched a crisp effort into the back of the net.

There were no further goals before the break and it was clear that the Hayes players were determined to improve in the second half.  They got on top and for a while Ashford had to defend desperately.  They could not though prevent an equaliser soon after the hour mark, scored by Hayes’ Mendy.

“Here we go again” may well have been a fleeting thought in more than one Ashford supporter’s mind, but the current squad seems mentally tougher and no such doubts were necessary as Kazi, yet again outstripping his marker, found himself tripped in the area for a clear penalty.  With no recognised taker on the pitch, up stepped young Jack Beadle and a confident strike restored Ashford’s lead, which they held on to with sheer determination as the home side did their darndest to level things up for a second time, although Tom Brunton could have made it safe for the visitors but he missed a glaring opportunity hitting his effort too hard and over the bar.  At the other end Tyler Tobin performed miracles in goal yet again, the defence stuck to its task and referee Chris Phillips, over maligned by one or two in this writer’s view, eventually blew the final whistle.

The win was matched by Chertsey Town who won by a similar score at Aylesbury, thanks to a winning goal from John Pomroy seven minutes from the end, but North Greenford lost what sounds a very exciting match  by four goals to three at home to Aylesbury United.  It leaves the race to avoid relegation as tight as ever and there will certainly be one or two more twists to come before it is finally settled.  On Saturday, Slough visit Short Lane and that will obviously be a tough match but hardly tougher than the games against Rugby and Daventry recently, which produced four points for the Ash Trees, whilst Chertsey and North Greenford meet.

Going back to last night, a big thank you goes to all our supporters who roared the team on throughout.  We don’t have that many and wish we had more but those we have are superbly loyal and we hope to see you all on Saturday.

Gary Tomany has provided a short report from the Sunday team, who enjoyed another good win on Sunday as follows: 

Another win for Ashford town, this time in the Quarter Final of the Surrey & Hants Border League Invitation Cup as they recorded a resounding 8-1 win over Surrey Athletic, who are currently second in the league.  The goal scorers were Tom Hall with a hat trick, Tom Chaffey 2,  plus one from Anthony Lappersonne, one from Kelvin  and finally Paul Lappersonne.

This Sunday morning, Ashford entertain Guildford Athletic in the quarter final of the Prince Albert Cup.