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The Evo-Stik League South

Aylesbury United

3 1

Kempston Rovers

  Half-time: (1-0)  
       
       
Teams
7Jack HOPWOODPlayer Image1
8Ollie STANBRIDGEPlayer Image2
7Jake BEWLEYPlayer Image3
8Jeanmal PROSPERPlayer Image4
8Chris CROOKPlayer Image5
8Ollie HOGGPlayer Image6
715 70m Sean COLESPlayer Image7
7Greg WILLIAMSPlayer Image8
814 85m Harry JONESPlayer Image9
812 83m Sonny FRENCHPlayer Image10
8Matt PEAKE-PIJNENPlayer Image11
 
10 83m Ben SEATONPlayer Image12
9 85m Kierran LATAILLEPlayer Image14
7 70m Aaron BERRYPlayer Image15
Maciej TAJSPlayer Image16
Archie DAVISPlayer Image17
 
  Ben WILLIAMSManager ImageM
   
1Player ImageMartin CONWAY
2Player ImageRobbie GOODMAN
3Player ImageHateley MERCER
4Player ImageAlfie POWELL14 68m 
5Player ImageAlex COLLARD
6Player ImageKyal MCNULTY12 68m 
7Player ImageNathan TSHIKUNA
8Player ImageBen SHEPHERD
9Player ImageTy DEACON15 62m 
10Player ImageShane BUSH
11Player ImageBen ACQUAYE
 
12Player ImageMason SPENCE6 68m 
14Player ImageEkene AMADI4 68m 
15Player ImageJosh CRAWLEY9 62m 
16Player ImageCarl KNOX
Match Report

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Match report by David Figg

After crashing to a 1-6 away defeat by newly promoted Evo Stik Southern League Division 1 South side (and last season's Hellenic League Premier Division champions) Thatcham Town in their final pre-season friendly the previous Saturday, Aylesbury United bounced back as they got their Evo-Stik Southern League Divison 1 Central season off to a winning start with a 3-1 home win over Kempston Rovers at The Meadow, Chesham on Saturday.

It was the first time The Ducks had won their opening league game of the season since a 2-1 away win over Potters Bar Town in the Evo-Stik Southern League Division 1 Central in 2015.

Moreover, it was United's first home league win on the opening day since a 2-0 win over Stotfold in the Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division back in 2012. Indeed, it was their first Southern League home opening day win since a 3-1 win over Corby Town way back in 1987!

Meanwhile, Kempston had gone into the game on the back of a 1-0 home win over Sandridge Rovers in their final friendly the previous Saturday which had ended a mixed pre-season of 3 wins, 2 draws and 2 defeats.

The first serious clear-cut chance of note came Kempston's way in the 9th minute when Shane Bush played a one-two with Nathan Tshikuna on the right and ran on before beating Jake Bewley and crossing for Ben Acquaye, whose right foot shot from 18 yards was inadvertently blocked by Bush.

Another chance came the visitors' way in the 18th minute when former Duck Hateley Mercer's long throw in from the left was headed on from 6 yards by Ben Shepherd but no Rovers player was on the end of it and the ball went out for a goal kick.

A really good chance came Kempston's way in the 20th minute when Tshikuna's lofted ball left Bush clear on goal and he took a touch to control before firing his left foot volley from 12 yards wide of Ducks keeper Jack Hopwood's left hand post.

The visitors went close again in the 22nd minute when Tshikuna's low through ball down the middle found the onside Acquaye who flicked the ball over Bewley to leave himself with a one on one with Hopwood but fired his left foot shot from the edge of the box past the keeper's right hand post.

Kempston were having all the chances and the Bedfordshire side went close again just a minute later when Shepherd's corner from the right found Bush who sent his header from 4 yards over Hopwood's right hand angle.

Another chance came Rovers' way in the 27th minute when Acquaye picked up a loose ball and ran forward to the right of middle before firing his low left foot shot from 30 yards wide of Hopwood's left hand post.

Then right at the end of the 30th minute and totally against the run of play, United made Kempston pay for all of their earlier misses as they took the lead when Harry Jones' short diagonal pass from right to left found Sonny French, who ran on before having his left foot lob from 20 yards half stopped with his fingertips by Rovers keeper Martin Conway with the ball bouncing into the keeper's right hand corner. 1-0 Aylesbury

The last chance of the half came Kempston's way with 16 seconds of normal time left when Bush's right foot shot from 12 yards was blocked with his left foot by Hopwood.

HALF TIME: Aylesbury United 1-0 Kempston Rovers

The first serious chance of note in the first half came United's way in the 48th minute when Bewley's free kick from the right found French at the far post who failed to get a touch on it with his head from 6 yards.

A half chance came United's way just into the 55th minute when a clearance by Kempston captain Kyal McNulty rebounded off Aylesbury's Sean Coles into Conway's hands.

The first substitution of the afternoon was made by Kempston in the 62nd minute when Josh Crawley came on to replace Ty Deacon who was making his debut after signing from Aylesbury FC.

Just a minute later, it was 2-0 when a low through ball down the middle found Jones who beat the offside trap and ran on before firing a composed low right foot shot from just inside the box into the centre of the net. 2-0 Aylesbury

Kempston made a double change in the 68th minute with Mason Spence coming on to replace McNulty and Ekene Amadi coming on to replace Alfie Powell before The Ducks made a change of their own in the 70th minute with Aaron Berry coming on to replace Coles.

The visitors went close again in the 73rd minute when Shepherd's corner from the right to the far post where former Duck Alex Collard's left foot shot from 10 yards was blocked inside the 6 yard box his team-mate Bush.

Then at the other end a minute later, United went within an ace of adding to their lead when Berry's through ball found French who ran into the box to leave himself with a one-on-one with the advancing Conway, only to see his right foot shot from 10 yards rebound off the inside of the keeper's right hand post before the ball was cleared by Collard for a corner.

Then in the 76th minute, the Kempston goal led something of a charmed life as United had 2 or 3 shots blocked in the space of about 10 seconds with the ball eventually running out to Greg Williams, who fired his right foot shot from 25 yards over the bar.

The hosts went close 2 minutes later when Matt Peake-Pijnen fired a low shot from 25 yards wide.

Then in the 79th minute, it was 3-0 when a short forward pass in the middle found French who took a touch to control before passing forward low to Peake-Pijnen, whose first time flick with his left foot found French whose first time ball forward found Peake-Pijnen who fired his low shot from 16 yards into Conway's right hand corner for a beautifully worked goal. 3-0 Aylesbury

United made 2 changes with Ben Seaton coming on to replace French in the 83rd minute and Kierran Lataille coming on to replace Jones in the 85th minute.

Then in the 88th minute, Kempston pulled a goal back when Shepherd struck a right foot free kick from the left into Hopwood's top right hand corner with the Ducks keeper only managing to get a fingertip to it on its way in. Aylesbury 3-1 Kempston

There were no more chances for either side after that and the final blast of Oxford referee Greg Kornasiewicz's whistle after a few seconds under 4 minutes of added time brought the game to an end and confirmed United's first opening day league win since 2015.