First three points secured
Darren Salmon rung the changes after Saturday's loss to Camberley Town. There were recalls to the starting line up for Jordan Gallagher and Liam Holden, whilst Danny Fernandez, Jay Jones and the recently re-signed Owen Davies were all handed starts; teena
It was Knaphill who went closest to opening the scoring on five minutes, when a Jimmy Norman free kick was missed by the SCR backline and hit the post, with James Taylor hooking the loose ball clear before Knaphill's Danny Taylor could get to it.
We started to get into the game, and a stunning crossfield ball by Matt Ferdinando picked out Gallagher, and his cross was well defended by Jack Collins as Fernandez looked poised to score, a minute later and another dangerous delivery this time by J.Taylor was well defended.
On the quarter hour, Jones forced an early from Knaphill and played the ball into the area, Holden and Luke Whiddett challenged, and as the ball dropped down, Ferdinando saw his shot blocked by Collins.
Five minutes later and it was 1-0, another great ball into the area by Jones found Fernandez and his header beat Richard Shelley in the Knaphill goal to put SCR 1-0 to the good. We continued to hold the upper hand, and another decent ball into the area by Jones forced Dan Thorogood to handle and conceed a needless free kick on the edge of the area. Fernandez though could only direct his effort over the bar.
Just shy of the half hour and Knaphill were awarded a free kick in the dangerous area. Neat link up play by Timmy Taylor and Thorogood saw the ball reach D.Taylor, who went down under challenge from Craig Hastings. Ferdinando went into the book for his protests over the decision and in the end the free kick was wasted.
Knaphill were enjoying a good spell though, and a great ball by Thorogood split our backline, but D.Taylor dragged an effort well wide of the right hand post. Knaphill were to rue the miss as SCR increased their lead. Ferdinando played a stunning ball out to overlapping full back Burrowes, and his dangerous cross was met by a diving Fernandez header, to make the score 2-0.
A minute later and Jones shrugged off the attentions of T.Taylor and fired in a low shot, which Shelley did well to turn around the post low to his left. Ferdinando saw an attempted lob go over the ball, as SCR continued to dominate, and on 44 minutes Fernandez mistimed a tackle on Josh Watkins and saw yellow, a challenge that was to come back to haunt him later in the game.
It was a slow start to the second half, with neither side offering much in the way of attacking moves in the opening minutes. SCR should have increased their lead on 50 minutes when a dinked cross by Matt Farrell seemed destined for the head of Jones, only for Ross Cheek to get a vital touch and clear the danger, however we regained possession quickly and Ferdinando split Watkins and Collins open, to find Farrell but he was denied by a great save at this feet by Shelley.
Both sides made changes on the hour, with Knaphill replacing Harry Rapley with Michael Chapman, and SCR introducing Matty Auletta in place of the excellent Jones. A minute later and SCR were down to ten men, when Fernandez instinctively flicked the ball away, to delay a restart, and picked up his second yellow.
D.Taylor dragged a shot wide on 64 minutes and a minute later looked to cause Hastings trouble again, as Knaphill sensed an opportunity to get back into the game, but we got bodies around the ball to clear the danger.
Shelley comfortably gathered a Liam Holden strike and it was to be the hardworking Holden's last action, as Salmon made his second, and third, changes of the evening; Holden and Ferdinando being replaced by Andrew White and Craig Nelson. Knaphill also made a change replacing Whiddett with Ethan Losty.
With fifteen minutes remaining D.Taylor forced a save out of Craig Bradshaw, and with ten remaining the other Taylor bought a comfortable gather out of Bradshaw.
Back at the other end and Auletta weaved passed a couple of players before firing into the side netting. Gallagher fired an effort at Shelley two minutes later and on 89 minutes Norman curled a free kick wide of the left hand post, as Knaphill looked to spark a late recovery.
It wasn't to be and it was SCR who should have increased their lead in the dying seconds, when Auletta proved too strong for Cheek deep in Knaphill territory, raced into the box, squared to Gallagher, but the SCR man of the match fired high over the bar.
A much improved performance from the Saturday, and the first three points of the season.