Folke­stone’s day of joy

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Front Page -

FOLKE­STONE In­victa se­cured pro­mo­tion back to the Ry­man League Premier Di­vi­sion af­ter a his­toric play-off fi­nal win over Go­dalm­ing Town at the Buz­zlines Sta­dium on Satur­day.

In­victa’s start­ing line-up was un­changed from the semi-fi­nal win over Leather­head less than four days ear­lier and the home side opened the scor­ing on 19 min­utes when Josh Burchell’s cross was met by Josh Vin­cent’s div­ing header at the far post.

How­ever, the vis­i­tors were level within two min­utes when Phil Wil­liams headed in from close range af­ter Richard Tay­lor’s throw-in was flicked-on.

The flurry of goals con­tin­ued six min­utes later with the even­tual win­ner. Jimmy Jack­son swung in a free-kick which Simon Austin con­verted from close range.

Jack Delo kept In­victa ahead with a dou­ble save six min­utes be­fore half-time, deny­ing Glen Stan­ley and Chris Wales af­ter a long ball for­ward from keeper Rod­ney Chi­weshe.

Wales fired over and Chi­weshe de­nied Liam Friend af­ter the break as the vis­i­tors looked dan­ger­ous, with Graeme Purdy de­nied by a Frankie Chap­pell clear­ance and Vin­cent block­ing a shot from a Stan­ley corner.

Go­dalm­ing looked set to equalise when they were awarded a penalty on 73 min­utes as Purdy went down un­der a chal­lenge from Jack­son but af­ter be­ing per­suaded to con­sult his as­sis­tant, ref­eree John Busby changed his de­ci­sion and booked Purdy for div­ing in a piv­otal moment in the match.

Chi­weshe saved from Vin­cent at the other end mo­ments later and Austin rounded the goal­keeper and looked set for his sec­ond un­til he slipped and sent the ball wide.

Town spurned an­other chance be­fore sub­sti­tute Bren­don Cass saw a shot tipped wide by Chi­weshe with time run­ning out and In­victa held on to record a his­toric win and se­cure pro­mo­tion – de­spite hav­ing had a 10point de­duc­tion this sea­son.

Pic­ture: Martin Apps pd1703881

Micheal Everitt holds up the win­ners’ tro­phy

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