Chappell’s derby delight
BRAGGING RIGHTS GO LEADERS’ WAY BUT ASHFORD MAKE A GAME OF IT AFTER A BATTLING PERFORMANCE
DEFENDER Frankie Chappell’s first-half winner decided this top versus bottom Ryman League Division 1 South Boxing Day derby in front of 522 fans – the biggest crowd of the season – at Cheriton Road.
The result may have gone to form but battling Ashford might have grabbed a late point after Mitchell Sherwood and substitutes Nick Smith and new boy Tom Murphy all went close, while Folkestone substitute Jimmy Dryden also wasted a great chance to score their second.
Neil Cugley’s Christmas was made even better as all of Folkestone’s main rivals dropped points, while Ashford’s 11th game without a win saw them fail to score for the sixth time in seven games.
The hosts’ Jimmy Jackson went close twice early on, while Ashford defender Laurence Harvey fired into the side netting and Danny Lye also headed wide for the Nuts and Bolts. Kevin Swaisland could also have put them in front twice with better finishing
Harvey and fellow defender Lee Hockey both denied Simon Austin with impressive challenges before Folkestone took the lead five minutes from halftime.
Ashford goalkeeper Darren Ibrahim punched Jackson’s cross clear to the edge of the area but the ball was knocked back in for Chappell to head home.
Ibrahim saved well twice from Darren Smith and also produced an even better stop from Austin before Harvey made another important clearance off his own line.
Folkestone Invicta’s Jimmy Jackson gets a shot away despite being under pressure against Ashford