Thursday 01st September 2005

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Saturday 19th
March 2005
Southern League
Division One East
Neil Sanders reports from Burroughs Park
Great Wakering Rovers 0  
Chatham Town 1 Collin 88

Chatham win their first ever game at GWR

STEVE Binks had the rare luxury of being able to name an unchanged team for Chats first ever trip to Great Wakering Rovers and the final trip to Essex this season.  Due to a mix up with the Rovers kits both teams had to parade in unfamiliar colours.

The first half hour was evenly contested. Chatham’s best attempts came from a Mark Brookes header in the 3rd minute, Darren Adams turn and shot on the quarter hour, and a curling right foot shot from former Tonbridge Angels striker Brendon Cass which just cleared the bar. 

At the other end Louis Green was kept occupied by some well placed through balls from the Rovers midfield and twice came out quickly to save and intercept on the edge of the 18 yard box.

Chatham did get the ball in the net after 40 minutes following good work by Brookes and Cass. However, Darren Adams was adjudged to have leant on his opponent too much before rifling home. 

Chats finished the half on top with further attempts by both Searle and  Cass, and the closest of all just before the whistle, when Adams shot hit the bar and the rebound header was clawed out for a corner.

Rovers started the second half with new intent.  Pacy winger Joel Clarke won a corner from which Scopes header landed on the roof of the net. 

Home keeper James Marrable then pulled of a useful save to stop a 25 yard free kick by Cass, before Frannie Collin replaced Mark Brookes on the hour mark. 

The home side’s closest attempt came shortly afterwards.  Danny Pitts found a small gap in the Chats defence and his shot was only half saved at the first attempt. Green was just able to pounce on the ball right on the goal line, after it had hit the inside of the post.

Chatham responded immediately with a good run and through ball by Collin to Steve Best, whose goal bound shot was well saved on the edge of the penalty area.  With both teams still looking for a winner Collin nearly found the answer when his half volley from Danny Larkin’s cross just cleared the angle. 

With just two minutes left it was Collin who did finally settle the result.  After a quick break he received the ball inside the Rovers area and was able to step inside his opponent to fire home from 10 yards.

It was a hard, well fought victory and pleasing to see Chatham get the late winner on this occasion.

* Kent rivals Erith & Belvedere - 2-0 winners at Waltham Forest - are now five points adrift of Great Wakering Rovers thanks to Collin's late winner.  Great Wakering Rovers and Tilbury occupy the relegation places with the Deres third from bottom.  Chatham's win, however, puts the Medway side in 12th place - the highest ranked Kent club in the Southern League Division One East table (not counting Fisher Athletic, who are in second place)

* Chatham Town's trip to Bourne Park to play local rivals Sittingbourne next Saturday kick's off at 12 noon.

Chatham Town:  Green, Smissen, Bourne, Boyle, Larkin, Best, Brookes (Collin 60), Searle, Cass, Adams, Armadi (D.Larkin 80).Subs: Binks, Billinness.

Great Wakering Rovers:  Marrable, Harrison, Holmes, Pitts (Smith 82), O’Connell, Scopes, Ewers, Parmenter, Trenkel, Hampshire (Shelley 76), Clarke (Robson 50). Subs: Ray, Heffer.