Monday, 14 May 2018

Tunbridge Wells U21 2 Chatham Reserves 4

Match 135/17/1585 - Monday, 14th May 2018 - Suburban League South

Tunbridge Wells U21 (1) 2 Forrester 30 Alex Carey 48 (pen)
Chatham Reserves (1) 4 Carver 45+1,54 Collins 74 Stace 89
Headcount: 42

Admission: £1
Programme: None
Mileage: 36/8,655

This was a third visit to Culverden Stadium in six days for Tunbridge Wells Under-21s. All three games have ended in defeat which may have accounted for the substitutes using us as their half-time target practice!

The prize on offer for the evening was elevation of one place in the division, should Tunbridge Wells win they would leapfrog their visitors Chatham Town into fifth position but should the Chats win they would in turn leapfrog Dorking Wanderers into a respectable fourth place finish.

The early stages was very much one-way traffic in favour of the hosts with Bayley Colbran smacking a shot against the post and, a minute later, forcing the Chatham goalkeeper to palm the ball over the bar. So it came as no surprise when the Wells went in front after 29 minutes. Colbran’s shot came back off the bar for Harry Forster to tuck in the rebound.

The set back triggered the Chats into action with chances for Warren Carver, who headed over and Jake Collins whose shot was saved on the line by Callum Hampson with claims that the ball had crossed the line.

Colbran had a shot cleared from the line but the visitors equaliser in first half stoppage time had been a long time coming. A fine run from the right wing and cross set up a tap-in for Carver.

A ridiculous push in the back from the Chats centre half on the lively Harry Osbourne resulted in a penalty from which Alex Carey converted to give the Wells a 48th minute 2-1 advantage.

That advantage did not last as, six minutes later, a defensive slip allowed Carver the opportunity that Hampson was only able to help the ball in.

Chatham took control of the game and went in front for the first time after 74 minutes when Collins shot into the bottom corner from 12 yards.

The Wells rallied but could not find a way through and the Chats wrapped up the game when Sam Stace scored.

All three of these Suburban League games have been watchable in their own way and it is a shame that as a Saturday league most supporters are watching their first teams leaving some talented youngsters to perform for the proverbial two men and a dog on a weekly basis.

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