Better watch out; Beadle’s about…
Red-hot Jack Beadle hit a hat-trick for the hosts in a humbling defeat for Rovers
Kempston Rovers fell to their heaviest defeat of the season at Ashford Town on an afternoon to forget for the Walnut Boys. It goes down as the club’s heaviest defeat in the Southern League.
The hosts were in front as early as the fourth minute, a corner into the box was met with the meaty forehead of James Cottee to power home at the near post. Rovers rallied and were level immediately, a long ball over the top from Luke Heneghan was met by Jake Newman, who composed himself and finished neatly across the goal for one all amid home protests of offside. Barely sixty seconds later and Ashford were back in front, a shot from the edge of the box stretched Carl Knox to the full in goal, but Jack Beadle was on hand to tap in the rebound. A breathless opening ten minutes could’ve been even crazier, had Newman’s second effort of the game found the inside of the net. Ashford were lively up front and were seemingly breaking through Rovers’ back line at will, Knox had to be alert to clear danger from the feet of Kazi and then to tip a Cottee shot wide. With twenty five minutes on the watch, Jake Newman was attempting to break clear of the Ashford defence, when captain Canderton clearly used a hand to stop the ball breaking for Rovers’ leading scorer. A clear sign that it was not to be Rovers’ day came when the referee not only waved play on, but then spoke to Jake about his protests. Newman tried to channel his frustration into more goal-scoring, but saw a shot tipped onto the post shortly afterwards, before dragging another effort wide. The home side made Kempston pay for the inability to convert chances as they broke clear ten minutes from the break, Beadle taking two bites at the cherry to make it three one. Robbie Goodman saw a header from a corner cleared off the line as Kempston tried to get back into the game before the break before Luke Heneghan executed a textbook volley from the edge of the box, turned aside spectacularly by Tobin in the Ashford goal. Rovers thought they had pulled one back in first half stoppage time, Seb Simpson headed goalward and off the post, where Josh Crawley headed back across goal. The ball was bundled over the line by a combination of Canderton and Tobin, but their blushes were spared by the linesman’s flag against Crawley. The score at the break was three one to the hosts, but Rovers had created some very good chances.
Rovers began the second half well, Crawley forced Tobin into a full stretch save just after the hour, but on seventy minutes Hateley Mercer was adjudged to have hauled down Kazi in the area and the referee pointed to the spot. Fisher’s spot kick went straight down the middle for four one. Jake Newman hit the side netting at the other end before Ashford had a corner that Rovers didn’t clear properly, seeing sub Jamaine Ivy tangle for the ball with an Ashford man. The referee pointed to the spot for the second time, Jack Beadle dispatched the ball into the bottom corner of the net for his hat-trick and five one. In the seventy eighth minute Cottee broke clear of the Rovers back line and curled in the sixth before in stoppage time a deep free kick was met at the far post by the flying head of Romario Jonas to net Ashford’s seventh.
Kempston slip to tenth place in the table after this first defeat in four, and attention immediately turns to Tuesday evening’s trip to Egham Town.