Thursday 01st September 2005

Folkestone stretch unbeaten league run to 20 games

Cugley's men enjoy time on island

Newport IOW 0-3 Folkestone Invicta
Saturday 6 March 2004
Dr Martens League Eastern Division
By Richard Murrill

Folkestone Invicta stretched their unbeaten Dr Martens League Eastern Divison run to 20 matches when goals from corners courtesy of James Dryden, Mark Munday and Lee Blackman gave a somewhat makeshift side a comfortable 3-0 win away to struggling Newport (Isle of Wight) on a sunny Saturday afternoon.

This was manager Neil Cugley’s first ever win on the island and will have acted as a lift after the midweek sale of top goalscorer Allan Tait to Crawley Town.

Blackman came into the starting line up, but Invicta had to re-adjust again when an early ankle injury to John Ayling gave a debut to 19-year-old John Walker.

Walker had impressed when manager Cugley took charge of the reserves in their 4-1 midweek win at Lordswood and had been the only ever present in the reserve side so far this season. Walker’s big chance came at left back as Paul Lamb was missing due to impending fatherhood, with captain Scott Lindsey moving across to centre half.

The ligament injury to Ayling was exactly what Invicta did not need after Tait’s departure to Premier Division side Crawley Town, but striker Dryden did end his barren run of 15 games without a goal and will now have to take on even more responsibility for the season’s promotion run-in.

Invicta were close after just 33 seconds when Munday shot wide from the edge of the penalty area after a move involving Micheal Everitt, Dryden and Ayling.

But when Ayling was carried off it took a while for the game to come alive again.

A relieved DRYDEN opened the scoring after 28 minutes when he headed in an Anthony Hogg corner from the right despite Newport’s efforts to clear the ball off the line.

An Adam Flanagan shot was blocked by a defender after 34 minutes when Dryden pulled the ball back at the far post and Flanagan headed against the crossbar following a Hogg free kick from the right after 39 minutes.

Newport had offered little by way of attacking threat during the first half and Invicta made it 2-0 after 45 minutes when another Hogg corner from the right was touched on by Dryden and converted by midfielder MUNDAY.

Simon Pilcher headed at Tony Kessell following a free kick on the right with Newport’s first real effort on goal after 59 minutes.

But it was 3-0 on the hour when BLACKMAN slotted the ball home after a Martin Chandler corner on the left hit defender Mark Isaacson.

Flanagan became public enemy number one at St George’s Park when Newport’s Danny Hatcher received a blow which left him unconscious and taken away to hospital by ambulance.

Flanagan joined Newport’s Isaacson and Invicta’s Blackman into the referee’s notebook and was replaced by Lee Dyson in the final minute.

Newport substitute Steve Bonser shot over the crossbar when the ball fell to him inside the penalty area during stoppage time with Newport’s clearest chance of the game.

Meanwhile, Folkestone's John Ullman Kent Senior Cup semi-final date at Ryman League Division One South Bromley has been arranged for Tuesday 23 March, at Hayes Lane, Bromley, 7.45pm 

NEWPORT (Isle of Wight): McCormack, Buckman, Hughes, Isaacson, Holmes, McCormack, Hatcher (Bonser 82 mins), Pilcher, Bridges (Newnham 45 mins), Wright, Barsdell.  Unused subs: Conners, Perry, Guy.

FOLKESTONE INVICTA: Kessell, Everitt, Lindsey, Flanagan (Dyson 90 mins), Guest, Ayling (Walker 9 mins), Chandler, Munday, Dryden, Blackman, Hogg.  Unused subs: Watkins, Egan.

Attendance: 224.