|Date||Saturday 21 August 2010|
|Match||Royston Town v Kentish Town|
|Competition||Spartan South Midlands League: Premier Division|
|Royston Scorers||Malins (2), Brinkman|
|Man of Match||Tommy Malins|
The classic phrase ‘this was a game of two conflicting halves’ could only be best used to describe this contest as Royston eventually overcame a spirited performance from their visitors, but made terribly hard work of doing so.
Paul Attfield was forced into one change with centre half Liam McDevitt suffering from a groin strain so there was a return for Ashley Grinham at full back with Dean McElvoy switching to centre half but otherwise the Crows boss stuck with the side that convincingly outplayed Hertford Town on Tuesday.
Unfortunately Royston seemed to take too much confidence from Tuesday’s victory as they were largely out played by their technically good opponents in the first half with The Crows struggling to find any rhythm, work ethic or team interplay.
The visitors began with enthusiasm and continuously made inroads into the Royston half and a number of shaky moments were endured as a previously solid defensive unit was often breached. A number of timely interventions and some late if desperate clearances around and in the box were witnessed throughout the half.
One early attack from Royston saw a cross elude everyone and George Brinkman controlled at the far post and sent a half volley against the outside of the post but
Kentish took an early 9th minute lead after a move down the right cut open the whole Royston team and a simple cross was swept home from 12 yards. Jorden Gibson rescued his team twice with one smart block, and one reaction tip onto the crossbar.
With Kentish committing players in attack as they sensed nervousness they gambled by leaving themselves open at the back and the Crows got into some decent positions but much lacked the quality needed to test a unsure goalkeeper who did not look confident from aerial balls into the box.
Ross Collins went close from a rare good move when he mis-kicked wide from a hooked half volley from eight yards and Ryan Lockett whipped in left wing free kick that eluded all his team mates when a touch would have definitely gained them a goal.
In fairness Royston were fortunate to be only a goal down at half time and a clearly unhappy Crows boss obviously made his point at half time as his team appeared as a completely different proposition.
With a spring in their step they looked brighter all over the pitch with their passing and movement taking good effect and despite some continued visiting pace and passing they didn’t look nearly as threatening as the first period as Royston got hold of key areas on the pitch.
For the second game running Tom Malins was awarded man of the match by the match day sponsors and his effort to break the offside trap and advance on goal and ram a shot into the net via the crossbar in the 54th minute drew his side level.
The emergence of Ricky Young at the interval also was pivotal as he caused havoc down the right and a number of his runs and crosses frustratingly just eluded team mates although one found Ryan Lockett at the near post whose effort was blocked by the keeper’s legs.
Royston took the lead with 15 minutes remaining when Brinkman superbly controlled a long ball turned a centre half and raced clear on goal with a crisp finish past the advancing keeper.
The game got quite stretched for the remainder but Kentish never troubled The Crows goal in that time despite gaining a few set plays and the points were wrapped up late on when Malins again raced clear and rounded the keeper to score.
Paul Attfield commented: -” I didn’t enjoy any aspect of our play in the first half. We looked terribly disjointed and off key and everything Kentish Town did was just done with far more urgency and intensity. I think only being one nil down at the break was the biggest positive I could take from the half and that is not acceptable. Once we started expressing our own game and showing the required effort levels we looked a decent and better outfit and we looked threatening going forward throughout the half.
Consistency in effort levels is massively important at this level. We didn’t have that in the first half, did have it in the second and today got away with it.”
Team – Gibson, Endacott, Grinham (Whitaker), McElvoy, Mulvaney, Collins, Edwards (De Lacy) Malins, Brinkman, Lockett, Robins (Young) – Unused : Welch, Apostolos