By sam surbey
Saturday 29th December 2018
Bostik Div 1 South East
Sittingbourne 2 - 3 Herne Bay
Goal: Embery (pen) Sobowale, Wilkins
Herne Bay: Simon Overland, Nathan Wood, Raphe Brown, Danny Rumbol, Ben Gorham,
Okalekan Bankole, Bradley Schafer, Tom Carlton, Jake Embery, Connor Wilkins, Danny Leonard
Subs Used: Ronald Sobowale,
Subs not used: , Miles Cornwell, Alex Mulrooney-Skinner, Simon Kabamba, Michael Freiter
Apart from the first twelve minutes this was a very enjoyable game to watch but that opening spell was very reminiscent of our start to the East Grinstead Town game two weeks ago. The Brickies were in front after 6 minutes play when Simon Overland misjudged a ball over the defensive line which allowed David Smith to nip in and loop the ball over his head into the open goal.
Gillingham loanee, Henry Wood then doubled the lead with a fine low strike from 25 yards, through a crowd of players giving Overland no chance. Bay then settled down and started to get in the game, although ‘Bourne were still looking dangerous every time they came forward.
The turning point in the game came on the half hour when Bradley Schafer sustained a knee injury and was replaced by Ronald Sobowale. Sobowale had an instant impact; he was brought down as he attempted a shot from inside the box. Up stepped Jake Embery, sending keeper Patrick Lee the wrong way to reduce the deficit to one. From this point it was all Bay and only three good saves from Lee prevented Bay from going in level at half time.
The second half Bay dominated with Sittingbourne relying on the odd counter attack. Sobowale then scored a contender for goal of month, and possibly of the season, when he got possession of the ball on the half way line in the 53rd minute. He advanced at pace at the Brickies defence, leaving the four defenders in his wake but was forced out wide as he neared the penalty area. Dropping his shoulder he turned the fifth defender and moved into the penalty area but he still had a number of defenders in front of him. He feigned a move to his right but switched to his left, leaving the defender marking him flat footed, before smashing a fine right foot volley, past the keeper to bring Bay level. On Ken’s video he had possession of the ball a full twenty seconds before scoring!
Sobowale had another chance minutes later but his snap shot went inches wide, the wrong side of the upright.
Bay were now fully dominant stifling any thoughts Sittingbourne had of restoring the lead. Bay pressed hard looking for winning goal but it took another 30 minutes before that came. Embery was put away down the left flank and was fouled as he tried to race towards the Sittingbourne goal. From the free kick, Tom Carlton floated the ball to the far post where Ben Gorham headed it back into the danger area. ‘Bourne’s central defender Lex Allen could only head the ball down straight to the feet of Connor Wilkins who made no mistake driving the ball over the line from close range.
The players, management and supporters went wild and quite rightly so. It has been a very disappointing start to the first half of the season, but with three wins in our last four games we are making up the deficit in points to the other teams in the bottom half of table.