Tuesday 4th October 2016
By Tony Rickson
Kent Reliance Kent Senior Cup
Sittingbourne (1) 1 (Gallagher (pen) 19) Ramsgate (2) 2 (Paxman 40, Millbank 41)
Sittingbourne: Simon Overland, Sam Welch (Yellow card), Tom Carlse, Danny Rumbold, Dan Tanner (Yellow card), Josh Wisson, Ola Rabiu, Connor Wilkins, Jordan Gallagher (Jefrrey Nguede-Noubissie, 74 min), Danny Leonard (Hicham Akhazzan, 51 min), Steven Ita (Jake Embery, 64 min).
Subs not used: Jono Richardson, Nick Davis.
Ramsgate: Luke Watkins, Jake Mackenzie, Jack Penny (Yellow card), Kane Smith, Luke Wheatley (George Crimmen, 26 min), Luke Girt, Tom Loynes (Ollie Gray, 83 min), Macaulay Murray, Aaron Milbank, Tom Chapman (Niall Salisbury, 87 min, Yellow card), Alfie Paxman (Yellow card). Subs not
used: Lloyd Blackman, Jake Munday.
Referee: Mr Kane Dempster. Assistants: Mr Craig Burton, Mr Josh Smith.
Judging by this, the future’s bright for Sittingbourne Football Club – despite Ramsgate at last getting the better of them.
Sittingbourne rested so many first team players ahead of Saturday’s important FA Trophy tie with Bury Town that just two players survived from the team that played at the weekend.
So 22 players have appeared for them in the last two games, showing how much strength in depth they’ve now got in the club with so many promising youngsters pushing through.
On the other hand, Ramsgate, stung by losing twice to Sittingbourne already this season as well as heavily twice last season, played a full strength team and were obviously intent on leaving nothing to chance.
But this Kent Senior Cup-tie was never men against boys, and in fact a young Sittingbourne team dominated the second half and only just failed to pull back the goals they conceded in one mad first half minute.
Sittingbourne took a 19th minute lead when Sam Welch started an impressive and pacy move and was on the end of it at the other end when he was brought down just inside the Ramsgate penalty area. Jordan Gallagher, back from suspension, converted from the spot.
Ramsgate then enjoyed by far their best spell of the match and Simon Overland, back in the Sittingbourne goal for the first time since August, made some impressive saves as the pressure mounted.
The visitors equalised on 40 minutes when Paxman shot home from the edge of the area and won the ball back straight from Sittingbourne’s kick-off to go 2-1 up as Millbank fired past Overland.
Sittingbourne responded well in the second half and went close through Gallagher, had a penalty appeal turned down and missed the best chance when Ola Rabiu blazed over after racing into space.
So Ramsgate held out but what was effectively Sittingbourne’s reserve team deserve lots of credit for the way they battled hard against far more experienced opponents.
A rest from midweek action for key first team regulars like Jono Richardson, Miles Cornwell and Conrad Lee – as well as a host of others – will hopefully have set them up nicely to return to action on Saturday full of energy for what’s a big game for the club.