Nurse's strike in vain
Bromley 2-1 Kingstonian
Stephen McCartney reports from Hayes Lane
Kingstonian came to Hayes Lane unbeaten in three pre-season matches, and after victories over AFC Wimbledon (2-0), Southend United (2-0) and Metropolitan Police (5-0) came across a side who have plans to win promotion at the end of this season.
Bromley manager, Stuart McIntyre, who guided Kingstonian reserves to the Suburban League championship, is plotting the Hayes Lane club's promotion bid. And on this performance, the signs look promising for Bromley. Steve Potterill, who played professionally in South Africa, sent over a sixth minute cross for Tony Read, whose diving header went wide of the K's left upright.
But clinical finishing from Chris Nurse gave K's the lead after eleven minutes. Andy Hunt, Bromley's goalkeeper, was beaten by a twenty-five yard shot that flew into the left hand side of the net. Reid was unlucky not to equalise, when his 27th minute run, which started on the half-way line, saw him reach inside the Kingstonian penalty area. His curling shot went over Lance Key's hands in the Kingstonian goal, before crashing against the crossbar.
Billy Mead, who played for Bromley twice last season, suffered the same feat as Read, when another fine shot crashed against Hunt's crossbar after 32 minutes. Bromley's Danny Smith struck a volley wide before Key saved Jason McKoy's low drive in the closing stages of the first half. Two minutes after the break, a cross from Nurse found Stafford Browne, unmarked at the far post, and he duly fired into the far corner of Bromley's net. But the flag had already been raised for offside and K's goal was disallowed.
Two perfectly taken Bromley goals in the space of five minutes gave Bromley a well deserved victory. A quickly taken free kick involving Danny Smith and McKoy found its way to Tony Read and under pressure from a last ditch tackle, the former Lewes front man, fired low into the bottom right hand corner. Bromley scored the winner after 54 minutes.
Bromley defended two K's corners and broke away on the counter-attack. Adolph Amoako lead the charge taking the ball from just outside the Bromley penalty area and into K's territory. A threaded pass picked out Kirk Watts, and the winger fired low into the far corner of Key's net. Mead struck Bromley's crossbar again, from 35 yards after 63 minutes, so desperately to score against his former side. The ball dropped for Browne, but the prolific goalscorer fired over Danny Harwood's crossbar.
After a one-two with Kirk Watts, Tom Ellis, found himself inside the K's penalty area, but goalkeeper Key came out to smother the ball. Bromley finished strongly and chances fell to Danny Smith and James Goodwin.
Smith volleyed over the crossbar and Goodwin headed Dean Thomas' cross from the right flank, wide of the left post. K's livewire, Liam Collins brought a flying save from Harwood with three minutes remaining on the clock.
Bromley travel to Thamesmead Town on Saturday 2nd August (3pm) and Tilbury (Tuesday 5 August, 7.45pm) Grays Athletic are the next visitors to Hayes Lane on Saturday 9 August (3pm) before the Ravens travel to Romford on Tuesday 12 August (7.45pm) to defend their Wembley Cup title.
Bromley: Andy Hunt, Steve Potterill, Colin Luckett, John Butler, Mark Willy, Dean Forbes (Capt), Jason McKoy, Danny Smith, Tony Read, Adolph Amoako, Grant Watts. Subs: David Smith (K Watts 86), Danny Harwood (Hunt HT), Michael Harney (Luckett 65), Kirk Watts (G Watts 38), Tom Ellis (McKoy 68), Dean Thomas (Read 74), Joe Vines (Willy 88), Kwabena Amaning (Potterill 79), James Goodwin (Read 75), Bobby George (un-used)
Kingstonian (squad): Lance Key, Liam Collins, Bashiru Alimi, Stephen Broad, Matt Elverson (Capt), Scott Smith, Craig Lewington, Billy Mead, Stafford Browne, Grant Payne, Chris Nurse. Subs: Rob Hollingdale, Rod Davis, Scott Edgar, Liam Garman, Josh Francois, Max Hustwick.
Referee: M O'Keefe
Assistants: K Kempster and S Downs