Match Report: Ashford Town 2-3 Basingstoke Town Saturday 23rd October 2021

Isthmian South Central Division – 23rd October 2021
Ashford Town 2 v 3 Basingstoke Town Attendance 137
Where: The Robert Parker Stadium, Short Lane, Hanwell, TW19 7BH
Late Lloyd Snell winner propels Stoke upto fourth in table.

Basingstoke Town had a starting line-up in this late October Saturday match: 1. Paul Strudley, 2. Nathan Smart, 3. Aiden Lewis, 4. Anton Rodgers 5. Scott Armsworth, 6. Daryl Wollers, 7. Bradley Wilson, 8. Ben Cook, 9. Conor Lynch, 10. McKoy Palmer, 11. Simon Dunn (Capt)
On the bench: George Reid, Lloyd Snell, James Haworth, Daniel Williamson & D’Andre Brown

Referee – S. Parkinson

Today’s game got underway with Stoke attacking the Esso fuel terminal end and there was very little action until the sixth minute as Conor Lynch receives the ball, slides it to Simon Dunn, who passes it to McKoy Palmer, who takes a touch then slide it back to Dunn, who takes a touch and hits a low shot that has the large Ashford keeper beaten, but it hits the outside of the post and rolls out for a goal-kick.

Then on 9 minutes Stoke break deep into Ashford’s half and the ball is sent over to Bradley Wilson as he enters the penalty area on the right, who clips it straight across to an awaiting Conor Lynch who heads it past the keeper into the net GOAL ! Ashford Town 0 – 1 Basingstoke 1 (Lynch 9 mins).

Then from a brief Ashford attack we break from our own half through Palmer who passes it to Lynch who takes a touch and holds it for a couple of seconds before sending a pass back to Palmer on the wing. Palmer drives towards the penalty area beating two players and sending over a cross to the far post, where Wilson heads it towards the gaol from 4yds out, it then takes a touch off the keeper and post and flies out for a corner. Nothing comes from the corner.

It is Stoke again who attack on 20 mins as Lynch receives the ball from Dunn, who slides it out to Wilson, on the right, he takes on and beats his defender and sends over across but there is no Stoke player to get that vital touch.

The first Ashford attack of note is on 29 mins as they win a free-kick about 30yds out, the kick has Strudley saving it low down by the near post and it rebounds away and we are able t clear. Ashford then have a shout for a penalty a minute later but the referee rightly waves it away.

The game is more even now, but nothing of note on either goal.
Then on 39 minutes we have another shot through Bradley Wilson but it safely held by the keeper.
On 41 minutes, Ashford attack from what looked like a handball by an Ashford player and they are able to pass it through our defence to an Ashford forward who hits a thunderous shot from by 7 yards, and Strudley does an amazing job of pushing it away and we are able to hook it clear.

Then just as fans are heading to the bar, we attack once again down the right, with Wilson, who passes the ball inside to Lynch, who in turn passes it to Palmer on the left hand side of the penalty area. Palmer then cuts inside beats an Ashford player then hits a sweet right-footed shot that flies in to the bottom corner of the net GOAL !! Ashford Town 0 – 2 Basingstoke  (Palmer 45 mins).

The game gets back underway and the referee blows the halftime whistle.

Halftime Ashford Town 0 – 2 Basingstoke Town

The second-half gets back underway, with Stoke creating the attack of note, as Lynch receives the ball from Nathan Smart, and chases off down the right wing, he sends a low cross that is half cleared by an Ashford defender straight to Dunn who holds it and then finds Lynch again who sends in a cross and there are claims for a handball, but again the referee waves it away.

Ashford are certainly showing more of a fight this half, but good defensive work by Smart and then Daryl Wollers halt two attacks inside our own penalty area.

Stoke are still the more dangerous side, but are unable to increase their lead, and then on 66 minutes a mix-up at the back, and Ashford pull a goal back, as they are able to slide the ball home into an empty net from 8 yds. (1-2)
Our resident fan who hates a Stoke two-goal lead has further cause, as just three minutes later from a corner the homeside equalise. (2-2)

The fight for the points is now back on and Stoke make their first change, and it’s a double change on 73 minutes as D’Andre Brown replaces Ben Cook and George Reid replaces Anton Rodgers.

On 76 mins we should be behind as Ashford attack again and they work the ball about 8yds out and a shot that looks to find the net is somehow pushed away by Strudley in goal and we are to scramble the ball clear.

Stoke then have two good chances on 80 and 81 minutes, the first is neat work between Dunn and Lynch who finds space to shoot about 20yds out and the Ashford keeper makes a good save. The second chance is created by Palmer down the left and as he beats two defenders inside the penalty area, he slides the ball across the face of the goal to where Wilson and Lynch are, who seem unable to decide who wants to put it away, and in the mix-up Lynch some how puts it wide of the post.

Despite all the match stats on the game it is Lloyd Snell (not Daniel Williamson), who replaces McKoy Palmer on 86 mins, and what a super change this is as with virtually is first touches of the ball, he beats his first defender down the left, then cuts inside passes another defender and sends a shot that finds the far corner of the net with the keeper helpless GOAL !!! Ashford Town 2 – 3 Basingstoke 1 (Snell 88 mins).

The game by the time restarts is in the final minute of normal time, and every clearance is cheered by the many Stoke fans who have made the trip.

The referee then books Aiden Lewis for what I assume was a foul on an Ashford player, but Ashford fail to create any chance of note and the referee blows the final whistle and send the Stoke fans behind the goal and down the sides into rapture of applause as we win three more points.

Final Score: Ashford Town 2 – 3 Basingstoke Town
Cullen 66 mins                               Lynch 9 mins Palmer 45 mins
Hellyer 69 mins                              Snell 88 mins

Match Thought’s
Another game, another three points, but this one should never have been this close, as we gave away another two-goal lead. With other results in our league we move upto fourth in the table with 19 points from seven matches.
Up Next:
Well we have a ten-day wait until we are back on the road once again this time at Staines Town on Tuesday 2nd November 7.45pm KO.

Match Report by Martin French..