Friday 02nd April 2004

Cray will bounce back, insists Francis

Joe Francis, assistant manager of Go Travel Kent League Premier Division side Cray Wanderers, insists his side will bounce back and raise their game against their promotion rivals, following Wednesday's 1-1 draw against Tunbridge Wells at Hayes Lane, writes Stephen McCartney.

Cray, in third place and pushing for promotion, squandered many chances in both halves against the Culverden Stadium outfit, who came into the game with Deal Town and Sporting Bengal United underneath them in the table.

The visitors took the lead six minutes after the interval through Nick Young's strike before Cray defender David Gray levelled proceedings eleven minutes later.

Francis, a talented midfielder who played for Charlton Athletic, Welling United, Bromley, Enfield and Hayes amongst others, insists his side will bounce back after dropping two points in midweek.

He said: "I would be more disapointed if we weren't creating chances. We started to get our game a little in the last three matches.  We had an iffy spell through the mud and the bad weather over winter.

"We've got to keep mindful of the big games coming up in a short space of time.

"I think we respond to the big games.  We've played in quite a lot of big games this season, and we've played well in everyone of them."

Leading 4-1 from last Saturday's Kent League Cup first leg at Herne Bay, Cray Wanderers are set to reach the final, unless a disaster occurs at Hayes Lane tomorrow.

If they do, they will face Thamesmead Town or Maidstone United, who play their first leg on Saturday.

On Monday evening, league leaders VCD Athletic are the visitors to Hayes Lane before Martin Ford's side host the return fixture on 24th April at Lordswood's North Dane Way ground.

Cray face Maidstone United twice in the space of three days at the beginning of May.  This will prove which team, between VCD, Thamesmead Town, Cray, Whitstable Town and Maidstone land the championship.

Meanwhile, the Kent Senior Trophy Final between Cray Wanderers and Hythe Town will be played at Ashford Town's Homelands ground on April 17th.

The Kent Intermediate Cup Final between Cray's reserves and Whitstable Town will be played seven days later at Welling United's Park View Road.

Cray Wanderers vs Herne Bay, Saturday 3 April 2004, @ Hayes Lane, Bromley,
Kent League Cup Semi-Final, Second Leg