Bromley 1-1 Kingstonian Ladies
Report by Mark Robson.
We haven’t had much luck recently and there’s been talk of someone having run over a black cat, but spirits are still high as evidenced by the fact that we had an unheard of, for this season at least, 15 players available for today’s game. We welcomed back Danni Bourne, Lisa Nichols and Emily Hobern and all of last week’s 12 were available again. We were away at a Bromley team, riding high in the division, who had thumped us at our place in the Autumn.
We were playing on a 4G pitch for the second time this season and started brightly, with the advantage of the breeze behind us, and pushed Bromley back. After 10 minutes we were rewarded when, after Bromley had failed to properly clear a corner, the ball was played back in to the Bromley penalty area where it fell to Sarah Sinkins who slotted the ball home to give us the lead. 0-1.
There was one other major incident in this half and once again we were on the wrong end of the officials’ decision-making. With 20 minutes on the clock, the Bromley goalkeeper appeared to drop the ball and, quick as a flash, Olivia Watson nicked the ball away and tucked the ball home. The referee appeared initially to signal the goal, but was then persuaded by the Bromley players to consult the linesman who said that he thought the goalkeeper had two hands on the ball albeit on the ground. Unlike last week, when the referee ignored the linesman’s advice on a crucial decision that cost us dearly, today the referee followed the linesman’s advice and disallowed the goal. We just aren’t getting the rub of the green.
Towards the end of the half we were all battered by a gale and a mixture of rain and hail, but there were no more significant incidents to report and we reached half-time with our noses ahead. HT 0-1.
In the first part of the second half, Bromley pushed us back and forced a series of corners. However, we weathered the storm and began to look threatening once again in the Bromley half. After 75 minutes, things looked to have tipped in our favour when a Bromley player was given her marching orders, but shortly after that we lost our midfield playmaker Mairead Halliday after a heavy challenge and Bromley clearly hadn’t given up the ghost. Sure enough, our bad luck continued when, right on 90 minutes, we failed to clear the ball inside our own penalty area instead slamming it into a Bromley striker who had the fairly simple job of bundling the ball home. Heartbreak again for our valiant ladies, but at least today we claimed a point against one of the serious challengers at the top of the table. FT 1-1.
This was one of our best performances of the season, and with squad availability improving, there’s plenty of cause for optimism as we move in to the final third of the season.
Goal scorer: Sarah Sinkins
Player of the match: Olivia Watson (pictured)