Given the recent indifferent run, a win of this magnitude was as unexpected as it was welcome especially against one of the better sides in the division. Let it be said that visitors Kempston Rovers played a full part in the match and it was only in the last 20 minutes or so when Ashford cut loose that a home win finally seemed assured, let alone the final margin of victory.
The game started with a bang. On an excellent surface that was a credit to Chad Beadle, it took the Tangerines just four minutes to take the lead through a bullet header from James Cottee from Jack Beadle’s corner.
A minute later the scores were level. Ashford stood transfixed awaiting what looked an obvious offside but the whistle never went and Kempston’s Jake Newman made no mistake.
A minute later Ashford re-took the lead when Beadle latched on to a defensive error and crashed his shot home to put Ashford 2-1 up.
There was a lull after that and both sides enjoyed opportunities with Kempston, if anyone, looking more likely to score a goal, with Tyler Tobin having to perform at his absolute best. However, Ashford had a determined look about them and on 33 minutes a superb movement led to a decent affort being kept out by Carl Knoz in the visitors’ goal. He could only push it out to Beadle though who rifled home for his second of the game.
The remainder of the first half saw the visitors enjoying their best period and there was some desperate defending at times. The second half was more even but it still came as a mighty relief when Ashford scored their 4th goal on 71 minutes. It came from the spot after Samad Kazi had been tripped in the area and Alex Fisher made no mistake.
That was the goal that really clinched the points as Kempston started to realise it wasn’t their day and a second penalty for Ashford’s 5th goal soon afterwards only underlined how the match had turned in the Tangerines’ favour. This time it was Max Webb who was brought down. It was a little less clear cut than the first one but it looked a clear foul and the muted protests from the visitors were somewhat half-hearted. This time it was “ Hitchcock and KIng Ashford Man of the Match” Beadle who stepped up and completed his hatrick, his first for the club, with an unstoppable effort to make it 5-1.
It was practically one way stuff for the remainder of the game as all Ashford’s old confidence returned, culminating in a sixth goal, this time from Cottee whose finish was sublime. Ashford were still not done and with just two minutes on the clock, Romario Jonas popped up from the back as he headed home a free kick from xx at the far post where he was unmarked.
It was a welcome win against a side who were no mugs and who played a full part in the game, despite the final scoreline. Ashford are now unbeaten in three and will need all their renewed confidence on Saturday as they make the short trip to play Hayes and Yeading on Saturday, more of which in due course.
The Ladies were not to be outdone as they also recorded a 7-0 win on Sunday against Premier Division Colne Valley Ladies in the Quarter Finals of the Intermediate Section of the County Cup to put themselves in the semi-final and a home game against Tottenham Hotspur Ladies in the semi-final on Sunday 18 March
This evening (Monday) the Under-18’s entertain Hendon in the Ryman Youth League, kick-off 7.45 p.m.
Six people have now signed up for our Life Membership Scheme at £500 each. The money is earmarked for infrastructure improvements and payment can be made by instalments. If anyone would like to sign up for the scheme, which will see your name permanently recorded on a plaque in the club house, please come forward.
A big thank you to Jamie, Sally and Linda for their hard work on the roast dinners yesterday, which were excellent and raised a profit of £25. We will hope to hold similar events on a monthly basis.
Two events coming up: on Friday 2 March we have our inaugural quiz night Quiz Night with Paul Mann in the role of quizmaster, starting from 8.00 p.m. Teams of two or more can register from now for an evening of fun.
There should be even more fun for the Ladies the following Friday when we have our first Ladies’ Night with a drag queen and two male strippers. The ones on the notices in the club are the actual ones performing. Cost is just £10 and tickets are going fast but we still have some available. Contact Sally on 07522 839014 or the Club on 01784 245908.