Play­ford caps fight­back

STUN­NING RE­COV­ERY: Ash­ford come from two goals down to snatch dra­matic league win

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Hockey -

ASH­FORD’S start to the South League Premier League, Divi­sion 2, con­tin­ued to im­prove on Satur­day as they pro­duced a smash-and-grab 3-2 win at Hen­ley.

The vis­i­tors started the brighter, switch­ing the ball around and cre­at­ing good op­por­tu­ni­ties, with only the lack of a cut­ting edge stop­ping them from tak­ing the lead.

Then, against the run of play, Hen­ley grabbed the ad­van­tage when a loose ball seven yards out was ex­pertly dis­patched.

Af­ter an in­jury to Dan Wells, Ash­ford were forced into a de­fen­sive reshuf­fle and Hen­ley’s sec­ond goal came soon af­ter, fol­low­ing some char­i­ta­ble de­fend­ing.

Keeper Keir Star­ley made three good stops, al­low­ing Ash­ford to get to half-time with the game very much alive.

It took un­til 15 min­utes from time for Ash­ford to reg­is­ter their first goal, how­ever, as a short cor­ner was rounded off by Chris Pearce.

Paul Cheap then pro­duced the skill of the game to set up Ash­ford’s equaliser. Driv­ing at high speed through the cen­tre, Cheap beat two play­ers be­fore his pass was de­flected into the goal by Sam Han­d­ley.

With the home side hang­ing on, Ash­ford went for the win. A first short cor­ner on the buzzer failed but a sec­ond cor­ner fol­lowed, which Play­ford smashed home for the win­ner. Ash­ford face Lewes at home on Satur­day.

THE 2nds sit a point be­hind the leaders of South League Open Kent/ Sus­sex Re­gional af­ter a 4-1 victory at home to East­bourne 2nds.

Ash­ford dom­i­nated the open­ing 15 min­utes and took the lead when Galvin’s free hit into the cir­cle was de­flected home by Fox.

Fox added his, and Ash­ford’s sec­ond, min­utes later, be­fore Stiff’s deft chip and fierce fin­ish in the sec­ond half put the game be­yond the vis­i­tors, whose con­so­la­tion came to­ward the end.

A trip to Wor­thing awaits the 2nds this Satur­day.

Pic­ture: David Par­sons

Jon Stiff of Ash­ford 2nds comes away with the ball against East­bourne

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