Walton Casuals 1 Whitstable Town 2
Match Abandoned after 75 minutes due to floodlight failure
Ryman Football League Division One (South)
Saturday 25th January 2014
Whitstable Town came away from Walton Casuals on Saturday with a feeling of injustice as a storm of biblical proportions eventually fused two of the floodlight pylons and the game was abandoned after 73 minutes.
The first attack saw Malik Ouani shot over the bar after only a minute. However Town’s response was immediate as they took the lead after three minutes as Laurence Harvey rose above the Casuals defence to fire home a header. After 11 minutes it appeared that the referee awarded a
penalty for the visitors when Charlie Smith was brought down in the penalty area. After a lengthy consultation with his linesman the referee reversed the decision and awarded a corner instead. Ouani was back in the action two minutes later when he sent a weak shot straight at Town keeper Luke Watkins. On 18 minutes another home attack led to a free kick taken by Gary MacDonald which was easily collected by Watkins. Dan Keyte hit a shot for Town at the other end after 20 minutes but home keeper Keiran Sanderson pushed the ball round the post. On 25 minutes Walton Casuals equalised when Scott Day found himself free in the penalty area and slotted the ball past Watkins into the net. The wind at this stage was at Casuals backs and was increasing steadily in strength. It was also getting more difficult for Town to clear their lines. On 33 minutes Sol Patterson-Bohner had a snap shot that went over the bar and then a minute later Connor French had a shot that was well saved by Watkins. The final chance of the half came on the stroke of half time when Jordan Wells won the ball and fed Craig Thompson who shot just wide.
The wind remained strong in the second half but this time aiding the visitors and it was Whitstable who created the first chance of the half after 47 minutes when a Steve Hafner corner found Thompson but his header went just wide. Three minutes later Harvey shot from just outside the area and that also went just wide. Then came the brightest moment of the game after 56 minutes when Keyte created some space and fired a shot from long range that sailed into the top corner of the net giving Town a deserved lead. French had Casuals main chance of the half but shot tamely on the turn. On 68 minutes Scott Heard fired a bullet shot from long range but Sanderson made a flying save to prevent Whitstable increasing the lead. Then came the storm that contained rain, hail thunder and lightning. The referee took the players off and while they were in the dressing two of the floddlight pylons went out. Despite there being only reduced light the referee eventually decided to abandon the game much to the frustration of the Whitstable contingent.
It seems that the footballing gods have been against us with floodlights this season as we came away having to revisit Walton Casuals later in the season.
Team: Watkins, Simpson, Heard, Harvey, Guest, Wells D, Hafner, Keyte, Thompson, Smith C (Murrison 61mins), Wells J.