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HomeFOOTBALLKings in the making, as Hill beat table toppers

Kings in the making, as Hill beat table toppers

Ide Hill arrested their slide of recent weeks and turned in a mature, winning performance against top of the league Bromleians on Saturday to lay down a marker that they belong at the top end of the Kent County Premier League.

After surrendering winning positions in their previous two games against Farnborough and Faversham, Ide Hill went in to the game against the league leaders looking to halt the slide and put together a commanding full performance, rather than just the strong first halves on show in those losing games.

They have also learned to play the conditions of the club’s Camberwell Lane pitch better recently, its smaller dimensions, in comparison to Wrotham, conducive to the fast breaking, direct style Ide Hill have mastered in recent years, and the hosts looked to get under the skin of Bromleians in such a manner from the first whistle.

The first half was tight and scrappy as both sides felt each other out but it was Ide Hill who snatched the lead after 40 minutes; the rampaging Callum Heath using all of his pace and athleticism to lead a counter attack down the right, his perfectly weighted cross field pass found the onrushing Craig Jackson who stepped inside a challenge and fired his 6th of the season between the keeper’s legs for 1-0 at the break.

Ide Hill have been in exactly the same position in the past two weeks, so were wary and focused regarding turning in a stronger second half, and they did, although Bromleians did pull level after 55 minutes through a freak goal. Full back Harry Bangerter advanced down the flank and aimed a cross towards the back post, although the centre happened to be perfectly placed in to the top corner, evading McKay in the goal and fortunately drawing the visitors level.

Ide Hill might have gone under in recent weeks but showed more mental strength and fortitude, resetting their minds, keeping their shape and composure and wrestling the lead back 5 minutes later from a set piece. A corner was cleverly headed back across the goal by centre back Charlie James to George Kensell, who rattled home from 6 yards out for his 3rd of the season and to put The Hill back in front.

Shaun Boyle came on from the bench into an advanced midfield role and was causing all sorts of problems with his unique brand of direct running and clever dribbling and he extended the lead further on 70 minutes, driving through the heart of the Bromleians defence and smashing an arrowed shot in to the far corner to  cap his Man of the Match performance that changed the shape of the game.

Bromleians did give themselves a chance at snatching a point, centre back Luke Kimberley smashing a long-range wonder goal in to the top corner on 80 minutes to give the visitors hope, but it was left to Barry Ryan to have the last word. Receiving a pass in the box from the solid Jaymes Randall, he twisted his marker and curled another beauty in to the top corner for his ninth goal in 10 games and a deserved and impressive win against the league leaders.

Manager Paul McDonagh was delighted with the result and performance, he said: “We were really good today, we controlled the game and scored at the right times. Today was important after recent weeks and we showed we can beat the better teams in the league. Shaun Boyle provided that little bit of magic from the bench, as we know he can, and we took the game away from them”.

Ide Hill climb back up to third in the league, one point off the top with a third of the season gone in what could shape up to be an interesting battle amongst the top teams, with a broad range of similarly able sides chasing to keep pace with Staplehurst, who have yet to drop a point. Next up, Ide Hill have the long away trip to New Romney on Saturday looking to continue their fine early season form.

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