TOWN’S PLAY-OFF HOPES ARE DENTED

Luke Girt going for the ball
Luke Girt going for the ball

Walton Casuals 3 Whitstable Town 1

Ryman Football League Division One (South)

Saturday 7th February 2015

Whitstable Town’s play-off hopes were dented on Saturday as they were deservedly beaten 3-1 away by improving Walton Casuals.

The game started brightly for Whitstable as after only two minutes a Peter Wedgeworth corner found Nick Treadwell who headed wide. On 13 minutes Kane Rowland hit a long range shot but Walton Casuals keeper Tom Wellham saved easily. Nassim Dukali had Casuals first attempt on 16 minutes when he shot straight at Luke Watkins. On 17 minutes Wellham was on hand to save well from a snap shot from Scott Heard. A minute later Wedgeworth broke into the penalty from the right but fired over. Immediately at the other end Dukali on the turn shot wide. On 25 minutes Tom Loynes cut through the Casuals defence running 50 yards before shooting wide. On 34 minutes Casuals scored against the run of play when Scott Day fired the ball in

Tom Loynes on a run
Tom Loynes on a run

as Town failed to clear.l. Whitstable did have once chance to equalise when Wedgeworth sent in another dangerous cross which was met by Luke Doherty but his header was deflected wide.

Town were however level within two minutes of the restart when the ball found its way into the penalty area and Ollie Gray was on hand to turn and fire in from the middle of the penalty box. However parity  only to last for nine minutes when Casuals were awarded a free kick from the edge of the penalty area. Jordan Cheadle threaded his free kick past the wall squeezing the ball into the corner of the net giving Watkins no chance. Within two minutes Shawn McCoulsky should have increased the hosts lead but fired high and wide. On the hour Cheadle was

Ollie Gray gets his first goal for Whitstable
Ollie Gray gets his first goal for Whitstable

to turn from hero to villain when he was given his second yellow card. On 69 minutes Loynes had a snap shot that went well over the bar. Despite being one man down, Walton looked the more likely to score and they were rewarded on 72 minutes when McCoulsky got onto the ball as Town desperately tried to clear the and he stabbed the ball home. On 74 minutes Luke Medley broke free and was one on one with Watkins who saved. Whitstable did try to get back into the game and were unlucky not to get a goal when Jake Mackenzie fired in a corner that found Ian Pulman bit the ball was cleared away. With five minutes to go Wedgeworth had a free kick from just outside the penalty area which rattled the post.

It was an off-colour Town that fell to defeat so must now look at recapturing some of the form  they achieved over the Christmas period as they go into the game against Sittingbourne next Saturday.

Team: Watkins, Mackenzie, Wedgeworth, Gray (James 76mins), Doherty, Treadwell (Donnelly 76mins), Heard, Girt, Pulman, Rowland (Coyne 76mins), Loynes.