By pitchside reporter Andy Mason
Herne Bay 1 Ramsgate 2
Pont 3 Green 47
A bright warm sunny day at the MBS stadium home of Herne Bay, a local derby game which was set to be a battle between two sides that have exchanged not just management teams but numerous players during the closed season. Everyone on & off the pitch were ready for the action to begin.
A tetchy opening as both sides sound each other out and looking to see what set ups they are opening with. Its Bay that strike first quickly out of the blocks, a Bay free kick played quickly out wide right played into the box first time and Harrison Pont running in is not picked up by any markers and has an open goal begging at his mercy for a tap in in the third minute.
The game progresses at a very fast pace with end to end attacking it appears that both sides midfields are there to make strong challenges and move the ball forward as quickly as possible.
There’s a real derby atmosphere to the game with both sets of supporters getting behind their team.
Both Josh Bexon & Tom Hadler the respective goal keepers are being kept busy as shots rain in from all positions on the pitch, Bay are certainly having the best of the half however with Gil Carvalho causing a few problems for the Rams defence.
With all the attacking football we are seeing numerous corners but good defending is keeping the scoring down to just the one goal.
Thirty eighth minute Rams best chance of the game as Joe Taylor out paces Liam Friend to cross into the box as Tijan Jadama runs in but is unable to get enough on the ball and his effort drifts wide of Bexon’s goal.
Bay continue to press and close down quickly and have certainly come out on top in the first half, as the half time whistle blows I think everyone is in need of the break not just the teams but the supporters as well to say the game has been played at a frantic pace would be an understatement.
Rams start the second half brightly with Taylor shoots Bexon blocks with his feet the ball comes out to Jordan Green still with work to do but he manages to find a gap and slots the ball home for a forty seventh minute equaliser.
Rams forcing Bay back on the back foot, but they are still quick breaking from the back and gaining a another free kick this one in a dangerous area played into the box Friend leaps highest for Bay and forces an excellent save from Hadler.
We are back to end to end play still very pacey but the final ball is being blocked by both defences, it’s not until the sixty first minute when Jack Parter breaks through beating three crosses in just behind Taylor, Green picks up the loose ball fires in for Bexon to save although he cannot control, the ball breaks out to Lee Martin who strikes low and hard with a left foot curler in to the bottom corner to give Rams the lead.
Rams are creating the better opportunities as the second half progresses, making their first substitution as Jadama is withdrawn for Benni Bioletti sixty seventh. He’s immediately into the action winning a Rams corner.
Toward the eighty minute mark we see both managers making changes as Bay replace Theo Osinflarin & Dan Carrington with Sammi Takaloo & Finlay Whitton, Rams change Bode Anidugbe with Freddie Oliver.
The changes do not affect the speed of the game as the sides continue, Rams gain a free kick out wide right played to Taylor’s feet out wide right he places a perfect cross for Sinnkaye Christie who’s powerful header goes inches over Bexon’s crossbar.
Another change for Bay eighty seventh Jacob Gilbert replace by Daniel Haastrup, immediately Rams are on the attack Taylor beating Pont to the ball the later grabbing a big handful of Taylor’s shirt swinging him off the floor and off the pitch, as last man Pont receives his marching orders reducing Bay to 10.
As we enter time added Taylor goes through twisting & turning wide right of the goal he struggles round Bexon fires from an acute angle and the ball rolls almost along the goal line missing the back post by inches & Bay clear.
Bay have one last opportunity ninety sixth minute as Takaloo fires from range Hadler saves and sends the ball up field quickly, Taylor & Green hold the ball up and the final whistle blows
A frantic but entertaining match in which Herne Bay undoubtedly won the first half and Ramsgate the second and the match as a result.
RFSA Player of the match: Jordan Green
1Josh Bexon, 2Jacob Gilbert, 3Frankie Smith, 4Harrison Pont , 5Liam Friend, 6Daniel Carrington, 7Gil Carvalho, 8Archie Burnett, 9Kane Rowland, 10Bola Dawodu, 11Theo Osinfolarin
Subs: 12Finlay Whitton , 14Sammi Takaloo, 16Danny Walder, 18Daniel Haastrup, 19Harry Brown
1Tom Hadler, 5Dan Johnson, 6Bode Anidugbe , 11Alfie Paxman, 9Joe Taylor, 10Jordan Green, 3Jack Parter, 15Lee Martin, 17Mike West , 18Sinnkaye Christie, 20Tijan Jadama
Subs: 4Joe Ellul, 12Louie Procopi, 7Benni Bioletti, 14Medy Elito, 8Freddie Oliver