Pre-Season Friendly Result – 8/7/23  


Cray Wanderers          2 (Collins 38, Thompson 76)

Welling United             1 (Trialist 89)

Pics: Jerry Dowlen

Cray Wanderers got their pre-season campaign underway with a fine victory against National South Welling United at Hayes Lane.  

In a game with the Wands playing mostly different teams in each half, Cray just had the edge in both halves and overall created the better openings in the match.   The Wands went ahead in the 38th minute when Louis Collins followed up a shot saved to score from close range.  Cray extended their lead fourteen minutes from time when trialist Cameron Thompson finished well from Sam Wood’s pass.  Welling pulled a goal back in the final minute through a trialist but Cray held out to get off to a good start to pre-season.

Wands manager Neil Smith used all his new signings during the game and also added Academy captain Reggie Rye for the first half and youth players Tom King and Michael Ihiedi made appearances as well as a handful of trialists. 

Welling had already started their pre-season last Saturday against Charlton Athletic and began the match on the front foot without causing Shaun Rowley too much trouble in the Wands goal. Former Carshalton right back Crossley Lema started the game well and down the right his ball into the box had to be headed over by Jack Holland for a corner.

After a spell of sparring and the teams looking to find their feet with new playerom outside the area which was well held by the Wings keeper.

Three minutes later Welling worked a half opening when Will Wood’s ball out to the left found a trialist who looking to perhaps catch Shaun Rowley out at his near post saw his shot caught by the Wands Player of the, the first real shot on goal came for Cray Wanderers in the 21st minute when George Porter hit a shot f

Shortly after Cray were awarded a free kick just outside the area down the right and from the set piece, Frankie Raymond curled a shot fractionally over the top.

In the 32nd minute Cray were awarded a penalty when after a lax pass back Porter latched onto the ball but was brought down by the keeper.  From the spot kick, Raymond shot was pushed out at the left post and following up Raymond turned the ball over the bar from inside the six yard box.

The game had much more flow at this stage and Will Wood who had a good first half for Welling shot wide of the left post from just outside the area.

In the 38th minute though Cray went in front when Nyren Clunis down the left broke into the area and the keeper did well to parry the shot but following up Louis Collins was on hand to score from 12 yards.  Cray went into the break a goal up and on the balance of play the lead was merited.

HT:  1-0

There were wholesale changes for the start of the second half with the exception of Shaun Rowley who played until halfway through the half before being replaced by Tom King.

Former Fulham Youth and Barnsley forward Cameron Thompson playing as a trialist looked lively early on and saw a shot down the right pushed behind by the replacement Welling keeper and then saw a shot go wide of the left post.

Welling had a fair bit of the ball but just couldn’t create that one chance to threaten the lead.  Cray did come close when Thompson’s cross down the right was glanced over by Tom Derry.  Then Thompson looked to set up Derry whose attempted volley was half hit and went through to the keeper.

Cray looked to threaten again from a free kick down the right and Anthony Cook placed a shot over the top with twenty minutes to go.

In the 76th minute there was daylight between the teams when Sam Wood hit a fine pass out from the left and over the top of the Welling defence and although Thompson looked perhaps to be a touch offside, the striker went through to finish with some aplomb.

Cray came close to a third goal three minutes from the end when Sam Wood and substitute Michael Ihiedi combined to find Thompson whose deft effort was palmed away well by the Wings keeper.

Welling kept going and pulled a goal back a minute later when a trialist took advantage of hesitation at the back to go through and place a shot into the bottom right off the post.

However, Cray were able to see out the remaining minutes to win the game and overall it was a positive runout for the Wands who have six more pre-season games before the start of the season and still time for more additions to the squad to be made.

Team:  1st Half:  Shaun Rowley, Jamie Mascoll, Cameron Black, Jack Holland, Trialist, Frankie Raymond, Reggie Rye, Nyren Clunis, Rio Campbell, George Porter, Louis Collins

Second Half:  Shaun Rowley, Archy Taylor, Trialist, Trialist, Trialist, Sam Wood, Alfie Evans, Anthony Cook, David Ijaha, Cameron Thompson, Tom Derry:  Subs:  Tom King, Michael Ihiedi

Att:  271

Referee:  Lawrence Torz-Brown

Assistants:  Dane Johnson, Alexis Stacchini