Chatham Town 0 Stamford 1

Monday 23rd January 2006
With Brendan Cass having departed to Dartford, Mark Brooks was pushed forward to partner Rob Denness up front for Chatham, with attacking support coming from  Byron Walker on the left flank, writes Neil Sanders.Early on, Stamford showed why they are unbeaten in several weeks as they pushed Chatham back and created a number of chances. Gareth Pritchard hit the bar with an attempted lob and then brought the save of the match from Louis Green with a powerful drive from outside the box.

Pritchard then received one or two unflattering comments from the visiting supporters, when his attempted flying volley worried the trees behind the goal more than the Chatham defence.

Chats weathered the storm and created two opportunities of their own on the half hour mark. A neat build up on the left and an excellent run by Byron Walker, drew the defence and enabled him to thread a pass through to Brooks. Only an excellent challenge by the last defender forced the shot wide. Brooks was foiled again a minute later when his goalbound shot was blocked out for a corner.

Straight after the break Stamford nearly took the lead. A goal mouth scramble came to nothing as Chatham threw everything in the way of the ball. Twice it was cleared off the line and Louis Green saved from point blank range, receiving a knock in the ribs in the process. 

Chatham threatened from set pieces with Steve Searle getting the better of his opponent at the near post. His first flick found Andy Boyle but the defender's header just cleared the bar.

Soon afterwards, Searle won the header at the near post again and was unlucky to see it loop over the defence and come back off the bar.

The only goal came after 70 minutes. A defensive header fell to Stamford's Mark Foster, who met it on the volley 15 yards out. The ball failed to bounce in the heavily sanded goalmouth and squeezed past the unfortunate Green. 

Chatham pushed forward in search of an equaliser in the closing stages and only good work by the visitors defence stopped Brooks and Jim Lyons from finding the net. 

A well fought game with the rare occurrence of no cards being issued to either side.

Chatham Town:  Green, Binks, D.Larkin, Boyle, Bourne, Best, Lyons, Searle (Long 80), Brooks, Denness, B.Walker.
Subs: Mortimer, T.Walker, Botterill, Fewell.