Bostik League South – 10/10/17
Faversham Town 0
Cray Wanderers 0
Cray Wanderers travelled down to Faversham Town and made it six games unbeaten but had to settle for a point in a goalless draw.
This was a match where two good defences were well on top and there were few chances created in the game and a draw was about the right result.
Cray came into the game in on the back of a tremendous 8-0 win against Horsham in the FA Trophy on Saturday whilst Faversham were beaten at Waltham Abbey but Faversham belied their lowly league position with a tigerish display and defended very well to keep Cray at bay.
The Wands defence continues to be the meanest in the Bostik South and kept Nick Blue well protected to the point he didn’t have to make many saves.
Tony Russell made one change to the Cray lineup from Saturday with Karl Dent unable to recover from the knock picked up in that game and Mitchell Nelson returned as left back with Dean Carpenter moving into midfield.
The first 20 minutes of the game were very even and there were no real chances created with Cray forcing a couple of corners whilst Faversham looked to contain Cray but as the half wore on the home side started to look threatening going forward and twice came close to scoring.
First, George Monger found Luke Griffiths down the right of the area whose shot fizzed just wide of goal. Then Griffiths again stabbed wide this time from Sam Bewick’s layoff.
Faversham managed to prevent Cray from playing like they did against Horsham and got in some pretty sturdy challenges especially on Michael Power.
It took Cray a while to create any chances and good work by Aaron Rhule down the right who found Jerome Federico but his ball across into the area was gathered by Simon Overland.
Cray were unlucky when from a free kick down the left, Federico whipped in a super cross which Overland got a hand to palm out and Jay Leader just couldn’t get a touch to force the ball into the net.
Then Cray had their best opportunity when Federico down the right put over a cross which found the head of Lea Dawson but he turned his header over the crossbar.
Before half time Faversham saw an effort from Monger from distance comfortably held by Nick Blue. Then an effort by Bewick was deflected behind for a corner. There was a huge let off for Cray as from the corner from Danny Walder the ball went into the penalty area and was turned into the net possibly by Bewick but the goal was disallowed for obstruction on Blue which the home fans felt rather aggrieved about at half time with the score 0-0.
The second half saw a half time change with Ben Mundele coming on for Nelson and Barney Williams switching to left back and the game was even more tighter although Faversham again had the ball in the net through Oliver Lee but was ruled out for offside. Then Walder curled a free kick over the bar.
Cray began to look more threatening around the hour mark and Leader coming forward found Rhule whose cross into the area found Power but couldn’t direct his effort on goal although it seemed he had his shirt pulled by a defender.
In the 62nd minute came possibly the best chance of the game when a ball forward was flicked on by Power towards Zak Henry down the left who put over a cross which found Power and flicked a shot which went just wide of the right post.
Cray then had a very valid shout for a penalty when Power’s flick on found Rhule who burst into the box and appeared to be pushed over by Ryan Cheek but the referee waived away the penalty claim.
Then a corner from the right from Federico to the far post found the head of Leader but directed his header straight to Overland.
This was followed by a cross from Power which was turned behind by Lee for a corner and then a similar cross from Fedrico was also turned behind by Lee.
The Wands continued to press forward and Dean Carpenter tried his luck from just outside the area but the ball went wide.
The final Cray half chance fell to Lea Dawson who saw a shot blocked but in the closing stages it was Faversham who looked perhaps more likely to snatch a winner. Firstly a free kick from Walder into the area forced Blue to knock the ball behind for a corner.
Then in the final few minutes twice, Liam King shot over the bar, the second from another Walder cross.
In the end the game petered out to a nil nil draw which on balance was the right result and both sets of defences deserve credit for some fine displays. Again for Cray Marcus Evans did little wrong alongside Leader and Williams had a fine game too.
Faversham worked extremely hard and it does seem a surprise they have struggled this season as they are always a difficult team to beat and this could give them confidence for the weeks ahead.
Cray went down one place to eighth in the Bostik South league table on 20 points whilst Faversham moved up one place to 21st on seven points.
The Wands are next in action on Saturday as Corinthian Casuals make the trip to Hayes Lane in the Bostik South.
Cray Wanderers: Nick Blue, Barney Williams, Mitchell Nelson (Ben Mundele H/T), Jay Leader, Marcus Evans, Lea Dawson (Capt,), Dean Carpenter, Zak Henry, Michael Power (Freddie Parker, 81), Aaron Rhule, Jerome Federico (Kyron Lightfoot, 78): Subs: Michael Frieter, Anthony Adesite
Faversham Town: Simon Overland, Ryan Cheek, Dan Carrington, Danny Walder, Oliver Lee (Toby Greenfield, 77), Chris Barnard, Luke Griffiths, George Monger, Liam King, Mark Lovell (Capt.), Sam Bewick. Subs: Ernest Okoh, Izzy Adebayo
Booked: Monger, Cheek
Referee: Mr K Dempster
Assistant Referees: Mr D Doyle, Mr J Dann-Pye