Endeavour Aplenty But No Goals
K's and Dorking Wanderers battle hard for 90 minutes but the game stays scoreless.
Match report by Jamie Cutteridge.
Despite being in charge for over a month, it’s fair to say that we still don’t really know what Leigh Dynan’s Kingstonian side will look like (other than being pacey and powerful). The six FA Trophy games, and the cup-tied status of many of Dynan’s imports, meant we’ve almost seen two different teams: one in the Trophy and one in the league. So perhaps Kingstonian’s 0-0 draw with Dorking Wanderers, Ks’ first game since exiting the Trophy, was a peek into the Dynan era.
So if this was the day to meet the new boss, it turns out he offered something fairly similar to the old boss: a degree of solidity at the back, a workmanlike pairing in midfield and a lack of guile in the final third.
That lack of guile became more apparent as the afternoon went on. For the first 30 minutes, Ks consistently threatened. The pace of Daniel Ajakayie stretched the Dorking backline in all manner of directions, giving space for Connor Hunte to find from a deeper position, feeding the width provided by Alec Fiddes, Ambrose Gnahore and the regular overlaps provided by Paul Rodgers and the impressive Andrew Musungu.
There was pace, there was power, there was something resembling a plan. It was in these moments that Ks had their best opportunities. Fiddes got on the end of a Musungu cross as the back post, but his effort was blocked by Slavomir Huk, before Ajakayie’s strong run into the area resulted in a finish straight at Huk. Later in the half, Taylor Miles’ curling effort was just wide. This was to be as good as it got.
Ks found chances much harder to come by in the second half. The lively Hunte picked up and injury and the visiting Wanderers adjusted to Ajakayie’s pace by sitting deeper, negating the threat of him running in behind. There was no shortage of effort, just a lack of quality when it mattered.
While there was disappointment at one end, the other end provided more encouragement. The all-Dynan-signed back four (though this is Rodgers’ second Ks spell) looked solid and comfortable through, only allowing one scare all afternoon, as returning Kingstonian Lewis Taylor blazed over from close range under pressure from Rodgers with ten minutes to go. Taylor’s attempts at atoning for the miss resulted in him shooting from anywhere, giving Tolfrey a relaxed end to the afternoon.
Despite the draw, Ks showed enough to suggest that the midweek aberration against Heybridge will be the anomaly, rather than the norm during Dynan’s era, but the Kingstonian manager will need to find the key to unlock opposition defenses if they’re to move their way up the table.
Kingstonian: Rob Tolfrey, Paul Rodgers, Andrew Musungu, Manolis Gogonas, Rob Bartley, Jahmal Howlett-Mundle, Alec Fiddes, Taylor Miles, Daniel Ajakaiye, Connor Hunte, Ambrose Gnahore.
Subs: Tom Derry (for Connor Hunte, 42m), Aristide Bassele (for Alec Fiddes, 86m), Reece Grant (for Ambrose Gnahore, 71m), Ace'a Laurent, Joe Oseyemi.
Dorking Wanderers: Slavomir Huk, Robb Sheridan, Chris Boulter, David Ray, Jerome Beckles, Luke Moore, Lewis Taylor, Tommy Summerfield, Sam Beard, Tom Tolfrey, James McShane.
Subs: Dan Pearse (for Luke Moore, 81m), Lewis Putman (for Tom Tolfrey, 63m), Giuseppe Sole (for Sam Beard, 63m), Isaac Philpot, Dean Hamlin.