Dorchester Town given helping hand in earning deserved FA Trophy replay

BY: Dorset Echo Sport


Kingstonian put through their own net twice as the Magpies earned a deserved replay in the second qualifying round of the FA Trophy.

Defender Aaron Goode inadvertently turned in a Bradley Tarbuck cross to give Dorchester an early lead at the Avenue.

But Reece Beccles and Pico Gomez netted a quickfire double to put the Ks in front before the break.

However, Dan Bennett headed Tarbuck’s set-piece past his own keeper on 81 minutes to give the hosts another chance in tonight’s replay.

Suspension saw Charlie Davis miss Saturday’s clash, while Jonah Ayunga, who picked up a knock in midweek, didn’t feature in the county town club’s matchday squad either.

Player-manager Mark Jermyn came into the side, as did Matt Oldring following a one-game ban.

There were places on the Dorchester bench for Ayunga’s brother Solomon and fellow reserve-team player Adam Diaz.

With Oldring returning to the heart of the hosts’ back four, and Jermyn playing in front of the defence, Nathan Walker was pushed forward alongside Tarbuck and Ben Watson.

Despite playing against the wind in the first half, the Magpies got off to a perfect start after only four minutes.

A ball into the Kingstonian box found Tarbuck in space and his cross was sliced into his own net by visiting right-back Goode.

The home fans were in good voice and their side kept up the pressure on Tommy Williams’ charges.

There were appeals for a penalty following a challenge on Watson but Bristol referee Mark Dadds rightly waved them away.

Bruce Hogg then picked up the first booking of the afternoon on 17 minutes for clearly hauling back Oakley Hanger, and the Kingstonian man’s actions were indicative of the pressure his side was under.

That said, the visitors always had the conditions to help them, and Alan Walker-Harris was very nearly caught out by a Beccles cross that caught on the wind.

However, the Ks had the woodwork to thank in the 23rd minute.

Watson, as ever, battled for possession in the box and wriggled free before firing a shot which took a deflection, looped over gloveman Rob Tolfrey and bounced over off the crossbar.

Walker, who again proved effective in a forward role, then had a hand in Dorchester’s next chance.

He played in Watson, the striker crossed to the far post, Walker left the ball for Jake Smeeton and the skipper’s fierce drive was clawed away by Tolfrey.

But having been on top, the Magpies then found themselves behind in the space of two minutes.

First, Harold Odametey ran from deep inside his own half, slid the ball to Gomez and his drilled cross to the back stick was turned in by Beccles from a yard out.

Then it was 2-1 to the visitors, Odametey pulling the ball back to Gomez and the striker did the rest with a crisp left-footed finish that Walker-Harris could do nothing about.

The rest of the half fizzled out somewhat with nothing of real note happening.

Some poor play from the hosts early in the second stanza almost led to a third for the Ks.

Oldring’s wild attempt at a cross-field pass sent the ball skywards and then Smeeton tried to be too clever.

Odametey picked up possession, fed Gomez, but Walker-Harris was quick off his line to smother the latter’s shot.

Lewis Morgan and Neil Martin were booked either side of a good chance for Beccles, while Walker’s clever flick at the other end went inches wide of the target.

It wasn’t long before Oldring became the third Dorchester player to be yellow carded, although some of the Kingstonian contingent felt the defender might have seen red for bringing down Gomez on the edge of the area.

As the side trailing, Dorchester had to commit men forward in the hope of finding an equaliser, and Kingstonian seemed more than happy to play on the break using the pace of Gomez and Beccles.

Chances for Walker and Smeeton saw Jermyn’s troops go close, while Ayunga was thrown on with 15 minutes to go to see if he could provide a bit of inspiration.

And with nine minutes left Dorchester got the equaliser they richly deserved.

It came after an outrageous challenge from behind on Ayunga by Ks skipper Alan Inns, who was incredibly lucky not to see red.

However, he and his team were punished further seconds later as Tarbuck’s whipped free-kick glanced off Bennett’s head and past Tolfrey.

Kingstonian may have given Dorchester a helping hand with a brace of own goals but that did not take anything away from the fact that the hosts were worthy of at least a draw.

Magpies: Walker-Harris, Hanger, Smeeton, Jermyn, Oldring, Dillon, Martin (Ayunga 75), Morgan, Walker, Watson, Tarbuck. Subs not used: Brookes, Murphy, Diaz, Old.

Kingstonian: Tolfrey, Goode, Wells, O’Leary, Hogg, Inns, Bennett, Odametey, Beccles, Gomez, Smith. Subs not used: Casey, Murphy-McVey, Sappleton, Hudson.

Bookings: Magpies – Morgan (foul, 52), Martin (foul, 56), Oldring (foul, 63)

Kingstonian – Hogg (foul, 17), Inns (foul, 80)