Eastbourne Borough 2 -3 Maidstone United // National League South // Match report by Ruth Tunnell // 12 January 2021
Having only played two matches in 48 days, Maidstone United got to enjoy their second match in less than a week when they beat Eastbourne Borough.
The Stones made two changes to the side that were defeated at Hungerford on Saturday. Zihni Temelci and Joan Luque came back into the team at the expense of Kreshnic Krasniqi and Justin Amaluzor.
The game got off to a fast start and within four minutes, the Sports were in front. Temelci’s header back to Noah Chesmain fell short and Joel Rollinson latched onto the loose ball before lobbing a lovely finish over Chris Lewington which went in off the bar.
But on 11 minutes, the Stones levelled. Luque found Chesmain who crossed for the unmarked Charlie Seaman and he finished past Franco Ravizzoli.
Just three minutes later, Maidstone were in front. An excellent counter attack following an Eastbourne corner saw Seaman charge down the right. He put a deep ball towards the back post where it was met by George Porter but he was denied by a good block from Ravizzoli. The ball came back across goal and Luque was on hand to tap it into an empty net.
The game then settled down and Eastbourne equalised on 28 minutes. Charley Kendall got in on the right hand side and his low cross was turned in by Chris Whelpdale at the far post.
Whelpdale was involved again when he got a shot off which Chris Lewington did well to claw away from goal. And then shortly after this, Kendle was in on goal and only had Lewington to beat but the Maidstone keeper did well get something on the ball and avert the danger.
With half time not long away, Maidstone had a couple of corners. Both of them were met by Joe Ellul and he saw his headers blocked with James Ferry having to get one of them away from close to the line.
Just like in the first half, there was another goal within minutes of the restart. This time, Maidstone retook the lead after Porter crossed from the right and Scott Rendell headed in from close range.
But after this, the game was a largely quiet affair until Maidstone had an opportunity to shore up the win on 75 minutes. George Elokobi headed the ball forward from a Ravizzoli goal kick into the path of Rendell who lifted the ball just over the bar.
Then deep in stoppage time, Eastbourne nearly grabbed a last gasp equaliser. Greg Luer crossed from the right and Lewington parried the ball before Seaman headed it clear from close to the line.
Eastbourne Borough: Joel Rollinson 4, Chris Whelpdale 28
Maidstone United: Charlie Seaman 11, Joan Luque 14, Scott Rendell 47
Eastbourne Borough: 1. Franco Ravizzoli, 2. James Vaughan (15. Dean Cox 54), 3. Kai Innocent, 4. James Ferry, 5. Mitchell Dickenson, 6. Steven James, 7. Joel Rollinson, 8. James Hammond, 9. Greg Luer, 10. Charley Kendall (12. Charlie Lambert 86), 11. Chris Whelpdale (14. Charlie Walker 52). Subs not used: 16. Charlie Towning, 17. Emmanuel Folarin.
Maidstone United:1. Chris Lewington, 2. Gavin Hoyte, 17. Joe Ellul, 6. George Elokobi, 12. Noah Chesmain (11. Justin Amaluzor 37), 8. Sam Corne, 15. Zihni Temelci, 14. Joan Luque, 5. Charlie Seaman, 7. George Porter (4. Kreshnic Krasniqi 82), 9. Scott Rendell. Subs not used: 16. Ravan Constable, 10. Ibrahim Olutade, 18. Saidou Khan.