Corinthian-Casuals match report
match report by Phil Murphy
Kingstonian’s final Isthmian League derby clash as tenants at King George’s Field concluded with a 1-1 draw in a hard-fought encounter against Corinthian-Casuals.
Much has changed since the August meeting of the two sides when Gus Sow’s panenka sent K’s en route to maximum points from the first four games. Tuesday’s 1-1 draw leaves Hayden Bird’s men with just one league win in five and puts a further dent in the Hoops’ playoff hopes.
The man with the best view of Sow’s cheeky chip, Danny Bracken, and his K’s counterpart, Rob Tolfrey found themselves observing proceedings from the unfamiliar surroundings of the King George’s Field dugouts. Sow joined them on bench, with work commitments delaying the industrious midfielder’s arrival to the ground.
K’s started in lively fashion and had an early opportunity when Rhys Murrell-Wiliamson burst down the left and flashed across goal but Casuals managed to scramble clear.
K’s however made the most of the positive opening when Daniel Ajakaiye scored a 21st minute opener. The electric frontman latched onto a Samuels through ball, went past the onrushing keeper and kept his cool to finish past two defenders on the line.
The lead was however short-lived and just nine minutes later Peter Ojemen’s thundering header pulled Casuals level from an in-swinging Kieron Cadogan corner.
K’s task was not aided by the departure of Elliott Buchanan before the break, who suffered a broken nose after receiving a stray arm to the face.
Passionate Casuals had the better of the play following their equaliser and started the second half brightly. Ricardo Thompson squandered a good opportunity from the edge of the box, before Gus Sow made an important intervention to block an Alfie Bendle effort.
As the half progressed, Casuals’ pressing game faded and K’s re-found their stride with Sow’s introduction adding control in the middle of the park.
Kershaney Samuels saw an effort deflected wide and Murrell-Williamson forced a smart Agboola save at the near post. In truth, for all the possession, K’s lacked cutting edge in the final third and couldn’t penetrate the spirited Casuals rearguard.
In the end, a share of the spoils was a fair reflection on the game in one of the more forgettable derbies of the Tolworth era.
Attention now turns to Saturday’s trip to Horsham where K’s will hope to banish memories of consecutive FA Cup departures at The Camping World Community Stadium.
Corinthian-Casuals: Emmanuel Agboola, Emmanuel Mensah, Peter Ojemen, Ricardo Thompson, Jack Strange, Jerry Nnamani, Jack Tucker, Alfie Bendle, Ollie Sitch, Bobby Mills, Kieron Cadogan.
Subs: Nathaniel Pinney, Misha Djemali (for Kieron Cadogan, 91m), Ben Cheklit (for Emmanuel Mensah, HT), Hakeem Adelakun (for Bobby Mills, 80m), Danny Bracken.
Goal scorers: Daniel Ajakaiye (21m, 1-0), Peter Ojemen (30m, 1-1)