By pitchside reporter Andy Mason
Ramsgate 4 Burgess Hill Town 1
24, 42, 85 Jadama 23 Perry
There was a bitter wind across the bright sunny WW Martin Community Stadium as Ramsgate hosted Burgess Hill Town (The Hillians) having more draws on their record than anything else Rams were looking for a bright start and to score early to force the opposition out.
Rams new striker was straight in to the starting line-up. Rowan Liburd joins from Cheshunt, a conference South side, and a St Kitts & Nevis international, fans were hoping for him to bring some fire power.
Rams at the airport end, we were underway with a very attacking formation with three upfront. Rams won an early corner. The 5th minute, a Miller cross comes off a defender forcing Huffer into a desperate save, scrambling the ball off the post for another Rams corner. The aerial threat of Liburd was already apparent.
The 12th and Miller worked an angle and got the first shot on target although it went directly into Huffer’s arms.
The 21st and Hillians mounted their first attack, a shot across with Bexon down quickly to save, distribution was poor and they came straight back winning a free kick on the edge of the D, Rams defended well as Paxman cleared.
The 23rd and Aboagye’s error gifts the ball to Hillians and is played into Perry who fired home from close range. There was no chance for Bexon in the Rams goal. Up until this point the defence had controlled the Hillians attacks very well.
From the kick off Rams attacked, Jadama collected the ball just inside the Hillians half. He broke through, running the length of the pitch as if the ball were stuck to his feet. With only Huffer to beat he coolly slotted the ball into the bottom corner across the keeper to level the scores.
The 30th and Hillians won their first corner with the Rams defending deeply. The game was very even with both sides having opportunities but not forcing either keeper into a save.
The 42nd and Jadama went through again, opening up the Hillians. He took one touch rounds the defender and fired home his second another well taken and controlled finish, giving Rams the advantage at half time.
Second half and Rams were attacking the town end. Hillians started brightly after the break and looked to press. It took Rams a short time to settle but they did and started to play some very attractive football.
The 53rd and Rams linked up play. Jadama, who was having an excellent game, slid the ball from the midfield out to Miller on the left. He looked up, saw Paxman running in crosses and Paxman’s run timed perfectly but his shot alas was just over the bar. A couple of minutes later Rams were in again and Paxman had another chance. Hie shot forced Huffer into a great point blank save.
Hillians were relying on trying to hit Rams more on the break although they were still trying to build from the back. Perry up front was still causing Rams defence problems as they tried to get back the goal deficit.
The 62nd and Rams opened up down the right, a good cross into the area and a diving header from Ward going fractions wide of Bexon’s goal. The game was by no means safe for the Rams.
As we progressed the game became very open and you could say whoever got the next goal would have the momentum to take it. Both sides were making substitutions.
Rams started to show some very classy football with Osinfolarin down the left linking up with Miller & Jadama. It was a joy to watch football being played like that. The 85th and the best move of the game – Jadama broke up play in midfield, passed out to the right down the line to Miller, crossing perfectly for Jadama to run on to and he finished with aplomb to round off one of the best hat-trick’s I have seen.
— Louis McLaren (@Louismcl01) January 21, 2023
Just to put the icing on the cake the 89th minute and Osinfolarin beat the defender out on the left, squared in to Miller who competently fired home Rams fourth.
Final score perhaps a little flattering but Rams in this form will look to go on especially after conceding first, the team showed great spirit and look destined for bigger & better things.
Ramsgate: 1Josh Bexon, 2Jerald Aboagye, 5Callum Emptage, 4Jamie Coyle, 14Rowan Liburd, 9Kane Rowland, 10Ashley Miller, 12Jack Paxman, 17Ben Fitchett, 19Jake McIntyre, 20Tijan Jadama
Subs: 3Jahmal Howlett-Mundle, 6Denzelle Olopade, 7Lauric Diakiesse, 8Lee Prescott,18Theo Osinfolarin
Burgess Hill: 20Will Huffer, 2Reggie Ward, 3Martyn Box, 4Kieran Rowe, 5Harry Pollard, 6Josh Spinks, 7Max Miller, 8Lewis Finney, 9Dan Perry, 10Connor Tighe, 11Hayden Skerry
Subs: 12Brad Santos, 14Lewis Croal, 15George Brown, 16Lewis Taylor, 17Sam Remfry
RFSA Ram of the Match: Tijan Jadama (TJ)