Thursday 01st September 2005
Saturday 2nd
April 2005
Southern League
Division One East
Thomas Hawes reports from Park View Road
Erith & Belvedere 2 Pulman 46
Elmes 68
Tilbury 5 Cobb 52,73,79 (pen), 89
Purches 90


ERITH and Belvedere literally threw three points down the drain as an abysmal Tilbury outfit gave the Deres a harsh lesson in taking opportunities in the craziest match that Park View Road is likely to see this season.

The Deres, buoyed by a creditable draw away at Maldon Town on Easter Monday, started brightly against a truly terrible Tilbury side. The Dockers were appalling in the first half and the Deres should have been at least 3-0 up at the interval, but somehow it remained 0-0 at half time.

Ian Pulman, usually one of the better players for Erith had a nightmarish first half in which he could have easily have had a hat-trick.

The former Margate man side-footed wide from four yards and blasted over the bar on numerous occasions.

Top scorer Chris Dickson had a few chances as well, but once again poor finishing and a distinct lack of composure.

James Elmes was the most impressive of the Deres, a long range shot just tipped away by Ricky Wiseman in the Dockers goal.

Tilbury rarely ventured into the Deres half and Glen Knight might has well been sitting in the stand rather than the Deres goal, such was the Deres dominance in the first half. But, somehow the sides went in level at the break.

The Deres had to wait little over a minute in the second half to take the lead, An over hit cross from the left landed kindly at the feet of Ian Pulman who made up for his earlier mistakes to give the Deres the lead and it appeared as if the Deres were going to cruise home to a comfortable victory.

However, the Deres lead was to be short-lived as the Dockers were awarded a free-kick 20 yards out centrally after a foul on Paul Cobb by Wayne Brown. Cobb stepped up to take the free-kick himself and exquisitely found the bottom corner to level the game up at 1-1 and the Deres were made to rue their missed opportunities.

With 54 minutes on the clock, The Deres had a strong appeal for a handball in the penalty box, but the officials turned down the claims.

For the next 20 minutes the Deres pushed to regain the lead and they eventually did when loan signing James Elmes found the top corner from 20 yards out.

The Deres should have went 3-1 up with 20 minutes remaining, but Ian Pulman managed to blaze over the bar to round off a miserable day for the ex-Chelsea YTS.

Within a minute Tilbury were level again as Paul Cobb got his second of the afternoon as he flicked the ball on from a corner and into the back of Knights net.

Seven minutes later and bottom of the table Tilbury had the almost unthinkable chance to go 3-2 up as Cobb was allegedly tugged down in the box and a spot kick awarded. Cobb thumped the ball down the middle for his hat-trick, but he was made to retake it. He made no mistake the second time around, but Glen Knight will be disappointed he didn’t do better. Unthinkably it was 3-2 to the Dockers.

The Deres searched for an equaliser, but their attempts were timid to say the least and the Deres were now only slightly better than the Dockers. There was just enough time for a couple more incidents in this bemusing affair.

Paul Cobb couldn’t believe his luck when he got his second front post header of the afternoon and his fourth of the half. A now completely silenced home crowd were given another dose of depression when John Purches thundered home in stoppage time to give Tilbury a 5-2 victory.