Thursday 01st September 2005

Welling book place in quarter-finals

Wednesday 7th
December 2005
Kent Senior Cup
First Round
Stephen McCartney reports from 
Park View Road
Welling United 3 Matt Lee 15
Che Stadhart 17
Danny Kedwell 38
Chatham Town 1 Brendan Cass 74

Welling United booked their place in the last eight of the Kent Senior Cup with a comfortable victory over Southern Leaguers Chatham Town at Park View Road tonight, writes Stephen McCartney.

The game started at a frantic pace with both sides creating chances before the Nationwide Conference South hosts took a 15th minute lead.

Unmarked central defender Matt Lee headed his first goal of the season from close range following Billy Thurston's corner kick.

And within two minutes, former Margate striker Che Stadhart curled home his fourth goal of the season into the far corner.

Wings goalkeeper Darren Ibrahim, making only his second appearance of the season, plucked Matt Solly's 16-yard hooked shot out of the air following Tom Binks' cross after just 31 seconds.

That set the early attack minded attitude and Wings top scorer Danny Kedwell drove a shot just wide of the foot of the left upright.

And Ibrahim had to be alert to parry Rob Denness' 25-yard effort before Welling's double strike gave them the advantage.

The Medway side, however, saw Danny Larkin's left-footed free kick saved comfortably and Luke Harvey's right-footed drive went wide.

But Kedwell found the far corner via a deflection to score his eleventh goal of the season, when he met Matt Bodkin's cross from the right, after the latter burst down the right and into the penalty area.

Chatham took the game to their higher league opponents in the second half, and if they were more clinical in front of goal could have salvaged more.

Denness' burst down the left, cutting past Welling substitutes Toby Johnson and Ian Brook, but his cross-come-shot was headed agonisingly wide by Harvey, who ghosted in at the far post.

Chatham, however, scored a deserved consolation with 16 minutes left.  Striker Brendan Cass' glancing header found the far corner after Binks' dinked over a cross from the right hand side of the penalty area.

It was the highly-rated striker's 16th goal of the season.

Danny Larkin hit two long range shots over late on, but both managers told they were pleased with their team's performances.

Welling United manager Adrian Pennock must be given a pat on the back for fielding a very strong squad tonight, including handing former Gillingham big central defender Barry Ashby his long-awaited debut.

"Yes really pleased," said Pennock.  "The disappointing thing really was Daniel Moore has just picked up a nasty ankle injury but we had some good youngsters performing out there and I'm pleased with every single one of them.

"They didn't let themselves down and with the more experienced players we treated the game properly and I was really pleased overall."

Speaking about Ashby, Pennock added: "Little bit ring-rusty, but he'll be superb for us.  He enjoyed it and it was his first 90 minutes for a long, long time, since pre-season.  He'll get better and I'm really pleased he's got 90 minutes under his belt."

Looking ahead to their trip to Bishop's Stortford and their showdown against Havant & Waterlooville at Park View Road next Tuesday, the Wings boss said: "Two massive games for us.  As I've said before, whatever game we play, I want to win.

"It doesn't matter, Kent Cup, FA Cup or a league game - I want to win every game. I'm really pleased - overall its been a good night."

Despite leaving some star players out tonight, Pennock was pleased they were watching their team-mates from the stands, after being put through their paces before the game.

"They've got good team spirit here and the ones that didn't play tonight were in the changing room before and after wishing everybody all the best and saying well done," revealed Pennock. 

Chatham Town manager Steve Binks was a proud man after the game, despite going out.

"I was very pleased overall," he said.  "I think we could have done better on all three goals.

"It's not as though we were outplayed.  They have got a vastly more experienced side, their movement, quick thinking was excellent - a level I want us to aspire to.

"But I'm delighted.  If we'd taken our chances - we had three good chances second half - got it back to 3-2, then who knows what would have happened?"

Chatham, who lost their unbeaten home record last week, losing to Arlesey Town, travel to Ilford on Saturday, and Binks is anticipating a tight encounter.

He said: "It's going to be a very tight game as they've got one of the tightest defences in the league.

"We've got to be patient, learn to keep the ball and pass the ball as well as we did at times tonight, rather than launch it long like we did against Arlesey, which was our undoing.

"If we carry on playing football like we did tonight, I think we can get a result there."

But the Chatham stalwart learnt alot from their first league defeat on home soil.

"I'm disappointed to lose any game," he admitted.  "But you can understand reasons why we lost and things you can do about it because it wasn't that we were beaten by a better side.

"I made a few changes, didn't quite work out and I've learnt from that and we've got a good squad here and we can go on another run.

Can Chatham make the play-off's this season? "Hopefully.  I don't see why not," Binks replied.  "We've got the ability, the experience and the youthful enthusiasm.

"Top two will be brilliant but the play-off's would be fantastic for this club."

Welling United: Darren Ibrahim, Luke Howell, Mark Green, Bobby Folan, Barry Ashby, Matt Lee, Billy Thurston, Danny Kedwell (Toby Johnson 58), Daniel Moore (Joel Thompson 48), Che Stadhart (Capt, Ian Brook 58), Matt Bodkin.  Subs: Lee Shearer, Jamie Day

Chatham Town: Louis Green, Tom Binks, Danny Larkin, Andy Boyle, Matt Bourne, Steve Best (Capt, Andy Larkin 58), Matt Solly, Luke Harvey, Robert Denness (Ross Finn 65), Brendan Cass, Glen Billinness (Mark Brooks 61).  Sub: Kevin Fewell

Attendance: 178
Referee: Mr David Buck
Assistants: Mr Daniel Wyatt & Mr Danny Campbell