Kingstonian 0 Rushden & Diamonds 1

Match Report courtesy of Unofficial Rushden & Diamonds Website (1997-2001)

4th March 2000 – Kingsmeadow (Attendance: 1772)

Rushden Team: Turley, Wooding,Cramman, Rodwell, McElhatton, Butterworth, Warburton, Hamsher, Lowe, De Souza, Underwood.
Substitutes: Peters, Heggs, Burgess, Mills, Smith

Diamonds Scorers: Crossley (og) 28 mins

Webmasters MoM: De Souza

Another game goes by, three points in the bag, but not a great deal to stimulate the writing of a match report! The first half was a struggle for both teams to play any football. Kingstonian have been letting the London Broncos use the pitch for a couple of Rugby games, and didn’t it show! The pitch down the middle is bumpy, a bit like a sand-pit, not conducive to football at all. But the teams tried their best to get the ball out to the flanks, and stir up a poor, un-enthusiastic, home crowd only swelled by the large number of Diamonds fans who had made the relatively easy trip around the M25. ( Well thats padded out the report a bit – now to the football)

Diamonds had a few half chances early on, the first an acrobatic overhead kick by Unders to Migs who unfortunately hit at the keeper who made an easy save. Migs frightened the life out of Farrelly again in the eighth minute when jinking into the box he hit a hard, low shot that ripped just the wrong side of the post and into the side netting. Kingstonian’s first shot of the game fell to ex-Diamonds and fans favourite David Leworthy, but with the goal beckoning his shot was woeful and bounced over the bye-line giving Billy Turley no worries. Diamonds actually took the lead on 18 minutes when a corner from Hamster was superbly put into the box, up rose Rodders challenging the “K”s Crossley, who duly obliged by planting a superb header past his own keeper. As first halves go, that was all the crowd had to discuss. A lack of atmosphere on three sides of the ground made it difficult for either team to raise their game. Most of the noise from the home fans came from their young cheerleaders and half a dozen singers behind the goal! The quote of the day was from the Northants T.V. crew who were heard to mutter, when looking up to the skies – ” Please, please lets have something in the second half as I cant get much footage out of that”.

The second half was much better, at least a few more chances for Diamonds. Migs had a shot saved by the keeper on 51 minutes, and again on 66 minutes. Macca tried to get in on the act and his tireless running almost paid off on 70 minutes but his shot was well saved by the keeper. Jon Hamsher had a superb shot cleared off the line and a Razor special from a corner made the keeper save at the second attempt with MIgs bearing down looking for the loose ball. David Lowe headed wide after great work from Migs down the left. In the 83rd minuted Brian Talbot brought Burge on for Lowey and Diamonds continued to push forward looking for the killer second goal. It almost came in the dying minutes as De Souza picked up the ball and ran at the “K”s defence. With Burge immediately to his left and Unders wide he picked out the latter, whose shot at goal rasped off the post and away to safety.

So Diamonds pick up yet another three points on their travels in a difficult fixture. Kingstonian huffed and puffed in spurts throughout the game without really threatening too much. In fact I cant remember Billy T having a shot to save all game! For Diamonds it was a hard battling performance in which they always looked superior. The front men worked tirelessly in difficult conditions, Unders and Hamster put in some great crosses from the flanks, and Hamster hardly put a foot wrong all game. Unders seemed raring to go after his midweek jaunt to Italy and continually tormented the “Ks” back, beat him for pace all the time. In tackling back Unders pushed Tarkan Mustafa inside at every opportunity, making him in-effective. In midfield Macca and Butts were – well they were just Macca and Butts. You know that you will get nothing less that 110% effort from either of them. The defence was secure, and poor old Billy T could have brought a book to read for large portions of the game! Hopefully now Diamonds can gain revenge for the embarrassing day experienced last time out against Yeovil – with the return at Nene Park this coming Tuesday. A win will hoist them back over Kiddy and dispel any hopes that Yeovil may have of the promotion space currently available.

A special mention to the Officials and Stewards at Kingsmeadow who once again were friendly, courteous, and always make it a pleasurable visit. I am not sure why the large Police presence was their, but as usual they were left with nothing to do other than check tax discs in the car-park. The only problem was dragging some of our fans away from the bar before the game – not because of the beer, just the barmaids!!!

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