Canvey Island match report
match report by Phil Murphy
Evans Kouassi fired a hat-trick for promotion chasing Canvey Island to consign K’s to a 4-1 defeat in Mitcham on Easter Saturday.
If the plan was to keep thing tight in the opening exchanges, the day got off to the worst possible start for Lane’s men when a well-worked short corner presented Evans Kouassi with time and space to fire past Rob Tolfrey.
The visitors, roared on by a vocal following in the south London sunshine went close through Conor Hubble, before claims for a penalty were turned away in a dominant opening period.
For a brief moment it appeared that Lane’s men had found an equaliser against the run of play, but a late flag denied Tom Collins a 24th minute equaliser following a well-worked K’s attack where Nyarko had strayed just beyond the last man.
Just two minutes later, it was the visitors who scored the second goal of the day, when a scramble in the box fell to Elliott Johnson. His low shot skirted through a sea of bodies, leaving Rob Tolfrey rooted to his spot and nestling in the bottom corner.
Half-Time: Kingstonian 0-2 Canvey Island
K’s were finding it hard to break down the Essex side and with 30 minutes remaining Simon Lane freshened up his frontline with the introduction of Keane Anderson and Alexis MacAllister. It appeared to have the desired impact within five minutes as Tom Collins swept home following a free-flowing K’s move.
The comeback hopes were squashed almost instantly however, as ruthless Canvey responded within three minutes. Evans Kouassi added his second of the day, converting from close-range after Tolfrey had tipped a Johnny Ashman cross onto to the bar.
Kouassi bagged his hat-trick late on to cap off a fine solo display. The electric forward collected in his own half and led the Canvey break at pace, before exchanging a clever give and go with Ashman and burying past Tolfrey.
The result secured a playoff spot at the very least for the Islanders who could still end up with the Isthmian League title if other results go their way. K’s, helped by events elsewhere, remain above the drop-zone with three nail-biting fixtures remaining.
Kingstonian: Rob Tolfrey, Emmanuel Adebiyi, Ibrahim Bangura, Hugo Odogwu-Atkinson, Matt Drage, Charlie Greenwood, Lee Lewis, Sean Bonnett-Johnson, Tom Collins, Darnell Goather-Braithwaite, David Nyarko.
Subs: Hakeem Adelakun, Alex MacAllister (for David Nyarko, 59m), Keane Anderson (for Sean Bonnett-Johnson, 59m), Michael Abnett, Jacob Bancroft (for Darnell Goather-Braithwaite, 78m),
Canvey Island: Bobby Mason, Odei Martin Sorondo, Tobi Tinudu, Jamie Salmon, Elliott Ronto, Elliott Johnson, Charlie Edwards, Conor Hubble, Bradley Sach, Luca Albon, Evans Kouassi.
Subs: Joe Paxman, Johnnie Ashman (for Jamie Salmon, 62m), Mason Hall (for Luca Albon, 75m), Rob Girdlestone (for Bradley Sach, 87m), Sam Jackson.
Goal scorers: Evans Kouassi (5m, 0-1), Elliott Johnson (26m, 0-2), Tom Collins (64m, 1-2), Evans Kouassi (68m, 1-3), Evans Kouassi (80m, 1-4)