Eastbourne Town Match Report

Saturday 24 September 2011.                                         Ryman League, Division One South.  


Walton & Hersham 1   EastbourneTown 1.


Swans saw little change in their luck, having to settle for a draw at Stompond Lane against their Sussex visitors when they deserved so much more. They were well on top in the match, playing some of their best football of the season, but it was still goalless when central defender Dan Sintim was sent-off with an hour played after being shown a second yellow card. Having already picked up a very harsh caution in the first-half for handball, he was equally unlucky to get a second one for an innocuous looking foul.

Despite their handicap Swans finally took the lead with ten minutes remaining, and should have made it 2-0 in the final minute, only for Eastbourne to break away to score the equaliser. There was still time left for Swans to be yet again denied a penalty for a clear handball.

Just one change was made from the side that had started the 0-0 draw at Ramsgate, Sean Bradley returning in place of AldershotTown youngster George Bowerman.

Swans had a good chance to go ahead with just a minute played. Glenn Stanley took a free-kick from the left, and when Bradley nodded the ball down it fell to Shaun Elliott, but unfortunately to his weaker right foot, and his shot did not have the power to beat visiting goalkeeper Kieron Thorp.

Eastbourne soon posed a threat when they crossed from the right and the ball was blocked away to Sam May inside the right of the six-yard box, and home keeper Sheikh Ceesay did well to beat his shot away.

Swans continued to build up some good moves, and some fine play down the left resulted in Bradley pulling the ball down inside the left of the box, but his half-volley went over. Bradley then had a shot blocked on the line when Graeme Purdy nodded the ball on from Richard Taylor’s long throw from the right.

Just before the half hour Sintim picked up the first of his yellow cards when the ball struck his arm, the action looking purely accidental.

Eastbourne’s Sam Crabb put in a good strike from the edge of the box, but Ceesay got well behind the ball. Swans’ scoring frustrations continued when, with ten minutes left of the half, Josh Webb played the ball down the middle to Reis Stanislaus, but he slipped over on the edge of the box when it appeared he would get clear. Five minutes before the break a long ball sent Bradley racing clear down the middle, but Thorp raced yards out of his area to block the ball, seemingly keeping his arms clear. Stanislaus immediately had a chance inside the right of the six-yard box, but he blazed his effort over, and soon after he was turning inside the left of the box to drive in a fine shot that just cleared the bar.

Straight after the resumption Stanislaus got the ball to Elliott on the left, and he drove in a fine, low cross to the near-post, where Purdy just put the ball wide under pressure from Thorp. Purdy then turned on the edge of the box to put a shot over following Elliott’s throw-in on the left. Elliott then worked the ball forward toTaylor on the left, and his driven cross into the six-yard box took a deflection to go behind for a corner. The kick led to a scramble in the box, and Stanislaus was just unable to force the ball over the line.

Then with an hour played an Eastbourne player made a meal of a pretty innocuous tackle by Sintim, and a second yellow card followed for the Swans’ defender. Bradley, who had been having a fine game, was immediately sacrificed to allow defender Ryan Adams to come on. Phil Williams and Ashlee Quashie also soon replaced Stanislaus and Jerome Maledon.

Midway through the half Purdy made a good run into the right of the box, but he lost control at the vital moment. With a quarter of an hour remaining Purdy headed wide at the far-post when Stanley sent in a free-kick from the left.

Just a minute later Eastbourne’s Adam Davidson was tripped by Stanley just inside the right of the box and the visitors were handed the opportunity to take an underserved lead from the penalty-spot. Swans’ keeper Ceesay has a good record of saving spot-kicks, but on this occasion he did not need to make a save as Scott Kirkwood blasted the ball several yards wide of the right-post.

Swans soon capitalised on their escape when they at last got the ball into the net.Taylor took a long throw from the right, Purdy nodded the ball on, and Williams headed in at the far-post.

Swans had the chance to secure a much needed win and three points in the final minute when a fine run by Williams got him clear into the right of the box, but with Quashie in the middle Williams seemed to be caught in two minds and keeper Thorp was allowed to come out and block at his feet. The ball was immediately cleared up-field, and when Crabb got possession just outside the box he struck a terrific shot that gave Ceesay no chance as it found the right, top corner. So instead of Swans leading 2-0 they had been pulled back level, but three minutes into stoppage-time they should have been given the opportunity to go ahead again. Williams made another run on the right before getting the ball inside Purdy, whose shot was clearly blocked by the hands of an onrushing defender, but the only result was another addition to the list of clear cut penalties Swans have been denied this season.

Swans’ Team: Sheikh Ceesay, Josh Webb, Shaun Elliott, Jerome Maledon (Ashlee Quashie 65’), Dan Sintim, Richard Taylor, Glenn Stanley, Victor Kiri, Graeme Purdy, Sean Bradley (Ryan Adams 61’), Reis Stanislaus (Phil Williams 65’). Subs. not used: Jason Pinnock, Gareth Williams. Scorer: P. Williams (79’). Caution: Purdy, dissent (70’). Dismissal: Sintim, 2 cautions; handball (28’), foul (60’).                

Eastbourne Team: Thorp, Davidson (Lang 81’), Kessack, Brooks, Fogden, May, Kirkwood, S. Crabb, Curd, Denton (Greenfield 68’), Geard. Subs. not used: Freeman, Simmonds, Christie. Scorer: Crabb (90’). Cautions: Brooks, Kirkwood, May.