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Match Report

Hendon
2
Kingstonian
3
Date:
Monday 20 September 2010
Competition:
Isthmian League Premier Division
Attendance:
215
Venue:
TBA

Match Report

Hendon missed out on the chance to take over - albeit briefly - at the top of the Ryman League Premier Division when fellow high-flyers Kingstonian won a thriller at Vale Farm on Monday night.

The Greens made two changes to the team which had drawn 0-0 at AFC Hornchurch on Saturday, Scott Cousins making his first start of the season at the expense of Casey Maclaren, while new signing Paul Robinson took over from Aaron Morgan in attack. On the bench, Hendon had identical twins, goalkeeper and full-back Dave Reading.

Kingstonian made the perfect start, scoring inside two minutes when a cross from Tom Bird was mishit, but flew past Berkley Laurencin and found the top corner of the net, just inside the angle of far post and crossbar.

Buoyed by the early goal, Kingstonian attacked Hendon with vigour and the Greens back-line was at full-stretch trying to keep out the rampant Ks forwards. Eventually, they had to break and, in the 24th minute, a deep cross from the left wing picked out the late-arriving Dean Hamlin, who headed past Laurencin.

This Hendon team is nothing if not resilient, and they set about repairing the damage. In the 31st minute, a magnificent drive from Lee O'Leary was bent away from Rob Tolfrey and kissed the inside of his left post before going into the net.

Four minutes later, O'Leary was nearly upstaged by Belal Aite-Ouakrim who returned a poorly struck clearance by Tolfrey from 45 yards out. He had to hit first-time, and the ball arched towards the goal. Tolfrey raced back and was able to gather the ball a couple of yards short of the goalline.

If the first half was good, the second was even better. Played at an incredibly frenetic pace, both teams tried - successfully - to play flowing football and the action went from one end to the other. The better chances, however, were created by Hendon, while Kingstonian used the pace of Bobby Traynor, the power of Lee Hall and the guile of Dean Lodge.

Two minutes into the second Robinson was denied by a superb block from Ks Adam Thompson, with Tolfrey beaten. From Cousins' resulting corner, Tolfrey plunged low to his left to keep out a header from James Parker.

In the 57th minute, Tolfrey was again beaten by Robinson and this time there was no defender to help him out. The crossbar, however, denied the Sunderland man a debut goal as his dipping 35-yarder didn't go quite low enough to find the net.

Free-kicks from Jamie Busby and O'Leary both required flying saves from Tolfrey as Hendon ramped up the pressure on the Ks goal. The visitors' defending was determined and also more than a trifle lucky as flailing boots deflected balls to places where no green shirts were lurking.

Just as Kingstonian's second goal seemed almost inevitable, so it was with the Hendon equaliser. It came after 75 minutes when a pile-driver from Busby flew past Tolfrey into the net.

To take the heat out of the game and to slow things down just a little, Hendon made a substitution immediately after the goal, Morgan replacing Robinson. It didn't work because from the restart, Kingstonian attacked down the right wing and when the ball was played into the penalty area, Dean Lodge knocked it past Laurencin to restore Ks advantage.

Kevin Maclaren replaced Cousins as Hendon desperately sought another equaliser. Danny Dyer (until he was replaced by Dave Diedhiou for the final few minutes) and Craig Vargas became extra wingers and supplied a number of dangerous balls into the penalty area, most of which just eluded Hendon heads or feet.

Michael Peacock added his presence at a number of set-pieces and went close with one header. Lubomir Guentchev fired just wide with a speculative shot, Aite-Ouakrim was denied by a desperate block from Toby Jinadu and O'Leary was just wide with another attempt.

But it was far from one-way traffic and although the Hendon defence did well to keep Traynor so relatively quiet he was eventually substituted, Kingstonian were always very dangerous on the break and they had two very loud and confident penalty appeals turned down.

In the end, despite a barrage of attacks, Kingstonian held on for a victory that took them above the Greens. On the balance of play, a draw would have been the right result, but the fans of both teams were in full agreement that they had seen a very special evening's entertainment.

"I could not have asked for more from my team tonight," said Hendon manager Gary McCann. "Every one of them gave me everything.

"My task is now to raise them for the FA Cup tie against Maldon & Tiptree on Sunday."

Report by David Ballheimer

Hendon

1
Berkley Laurencin
2
Danny Dyer
3
Craig Vargas
4
Michael Peacock
5
James Parker
6
Jamie Busby
7
Lubomir Guentchev
8
Lee O'Leary
9
Paul Robinson
10
Belal Aite-Ouakrim
11
Scott Cousins
12
Kevin Maclaren
13
Aaron Morgan
14
Dave Diedhiou
15
Dave Reading
16
James Reading

Match Events

Tom Bird
2''
Dean Hamlin
24''
32''
Lee O'Leary
Tobi Jinadu replaced Gary Macdonald
67''
74''
Jamie Busby
75''
Aaron Morgan replaced Paul Robinson
Dean Lodge
75''
77''
Kevin Maclaren replaced Scott Cousins
Carl Wilson-Denis replaced Dean Lodge
81''
85''
Dave Diedhiou replaced Danny Dyer
Gomez Dali replaced Bobby Traynor
87''

Kingstonian

1
Rob Tolfrey
2
Dean Hamlin
3
Tom Bird
4
Max Hustwick
5
Gary Macdonald
6
Jean-Sylvan Dossou
7
Matt Gray
8
Adam Thompson
9
Bobby Traynor
10
Lee Hall
11
Dean Lodge
12
Tobi Jinadu
14
Carl Wilson-Denis
15
Sam Clayton
16
Gomez Dali
17
Nic Taylor