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Saturday 25th August 2018
Emirates FA Cup, Preliminary Round
Sittingbourne 2 (Jackson 23 & 87 mins), Bearsted 0
Attendance 204
Report by: Peter Pitts

Defeating a lower league team in the FA Cup is never a given, as fellow Bostik step 4 clubs Ashford Utd (beaten by Horsham YMCA), Chipstead (beaten by Corinthian), and Greenwich Borough (Beaten 7-3 by Lancing), whilst Whyteleafe and Cray Wanderers were both held to draws by Saltdean United and  Rusthall respectively, so it was with some trepidation that Sittingbourne took on near neighbours Bearsted, especially after last year’s preliminary round defeat against Pagham. In the end we wondered what we were worrying about, however Bearsted were no walkovers and with better finishing could have got something from this game. As it was though they were caught off-side far too many times and they ran out of steam at the end.
Sittingbourne were not the team that fought so well against Tonbridge in mid-week, however they did enough in both halves to eventually ease through to the next round. In truth Sittingbourne keeper Patrick Lee was rarely troubled, whilst Bearsted keeper Scott Andrews made two vital saves to keep the score down. Bearsted’s game was based on the long ball, which for the best part of the game, Sittingbourne’s defenders comfortably dealt with. Sittingbourne played it on the ground more and with Bola Dawodu and especially Ira Jackson harrying well, they were a real handful for the Bearsted defence.
Bearsted were out of the blocks quickly and David Baranowski had a good chance to give the visitors an early lead; but he skewed his shot wide, then Dawodu found himself with only the keeper to beat, but the keeper managed to grab the ball.
After an even 20 minutes Sittingbourne took the lead after Dawodu sped the left and crossed the ball to where the unmarked Ira Jackson was able to roll the ball into the net.
Bearsted had another shot go just wide and on 31 minutes they thought they had won a penalty but the referee deemed that the foul had taken place just on the edge of the area. The free kick was blasted well wide, but then came a period of good visitor pressure but without troubling Lee.
The second half belonged to Sittingbourne. Tom Loynes saw his vicious shot well held by Andrews, and on 62 minutes Dawodu had a “goal” disallowed. Jackson then had an effort deflected for a corner. Bearsted’s Sam Flisher had a shot that again didn’t trouble Lee, but it was Sittingbourne who were more accurate, substitute Khali McFarlane’s shot bringing another good save from Lee.
The final 10 minutes was all Sittingbourne, Lewis Chambers skied an effort, and Jackson hit a shot wide. The game was sealed for Sittingbourne with 3 minutes to go when with the Bears pushing up field left huge gaps at the back and a through ball to Jackson gave him time to fire the ball into the net. This wasn’t a perfect performance but it was enough, and the £2,890 winnings will certainly come in handy !

Sittingbourne: Patrick Lee, Josh Dorling (yellow card), Reiss Crimmen, Dan Parkinson, Lex Allan, Chris Webber, Ira Jackson, Lewis Chambers, Bola Dawodu, Tommie Fagg (Khalil McFarlane 71 mins), Tom Loynes (Izzy Adebayo 71 mins). Subs not used: Rob Lofting, Harrison Hatfull, Johan Caney-Bryan, Keith Orenuga, Harry Brooks

Bearsted: Scott Andrews, Jex Hammond, Cameron Croucher, Andrew Foster (Jonathan Rogers), Graeme Andrews, Matt Gardner, Sam Flisher, Ryan Croucher (Jack Sellens), Peter Williams (Matthew Hathway), David Baranowski, Reece Collins. Subs not used: Charlie Allen, Rob Lyall, Matthew Weller.

Referee: Mathew Pollington, Assistants: Harry Phillips, Matthew Williams.



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