Bank Holiday Horror
At The Hoverspeed
Margate (Pullman 58) 1
Stevenage Borough (Holloway 7, 37, Baptiste 18, Elding 22) 4
Monday 25th August 2003 at The Hoverspeed Stadium.
By Peter Guise
Margate are still searching for their first win of this new Conference campaign after four first half goals from a rampant Stevenage Borough set the seal on this Bank Holiday horror show at the Hoverspeed.
With the absence of Jean Michel Sigerre up front and Bill Edwards at the back, both absent through injury, the task of containing one of the pre-season’s hot tips for a place in the play offs became more of an uphill struggle. Kinnear rang the changes after four starts without victory by giving starts to Che Stadhart and Adrian Clarke the latter of whom showed why his non-inclusion in previous starting line ups has been a mystery to many supporters.
Even so, Borough signalled their intentions in style early on and took the lead in the seventh minute. Gary Holloway found space inside the six-yard area and although his first shot was blocked on the line by Sam Sodje, Holloway stabbed the rebound home. Eleven minutes later Rocky Baptiste, who scored for Farnborough at Highbury last season, was on hand to nod home a second after Geoff Pitcher’s left wing cross had been headed back across the six yard box by Elding. It was Anthony Elding himself who added a spectacular third in the 22nd minute. Some 22 yards out and with his back to goal he swivelled to unleash an unstoppable left foot shot that sailed past Phil Smith in the Margate goal.
A brief Margate rally saw a Graham Porter header blocked on the line, a Warren Patmore header roll agonisingly wide of the right hand post. Sensing that Margate might be finding their range Stevenage stepped up a gear and scored a fourth when Gary Holloway netted his second of the match in the 37th minute, capitalising on a leaden footed Smith rooted to his goal line when the home defence failed to clear yet more danger. Just before the break Warren Patmore rose to meet Adrian Clarke’s cross only to see his effort graze the top of the Borough crossbar.
Chris Kinnear took immediate action at half time bringing on John Keister and Ian Pullman for Porter and Stadhart. With Stevenage understandably taking their foot off the gas pedal in the second half Ian Pullman grabbed a goal back just short of the hour with a quality strike but this was to be Margate’s only success on this unhappy Bank Holiday.
Margate: Smith, Oates, Annon, Sodje, Porter (Keister 46), Leberl, Clarke, McFlynn, Saunders, Patmore, Stadhart (Pullman 46). Subs not used: Beard, Abbott, Mitten. Booked: Keister (71) Sent off: none
Stevenage Borough: Abbey, Travis, Flynn, Bunce, Laker, Cook, Costello (Warner 57), Baptiste (Battersby 57), Holloway, Pitcher, Elding (Marcelle 85). Subs not used: Langston, Perez Booked: none Sent off: none.
Referee: S Rubery