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Match Report
Bostik North - 2017/2018
Canvey Island 3
F. Merrifield (29), M. Tuohy (53), OG (85)
Waltham Abbey 0

Canvey Island bounced back with a straight forward 3-0 Bostik North win against Waltham Abbey at The Frost Hire Stadium on Saturday.

Manager Danny Heale made two changes from the side that were beaten 4-1 away to Heybridge Swifts two days earlier. In came Nathan Fox at right back and Martin Tuohy up front, with Jake Pitty and Sam Collins dropping to the bench.

Tuohy partnered George Sykes in attack while Mitchell Gilbey dropped back to fill the gap left by Collins in central midfield.

The visiting squad included former-Gull Ross Johnson on the bench who made ten appearances at the end of the 2015/16 season.

It was the visitors who started the better of the two sides and had the better of the opening quarter of the match.

On 12 minutes a good cross from the right by defender Jack Daveney found the head of Abbotts captain Billy Holland just inside the area. However, his effort went through a crowd of players but straight at goalkeeper Henry Newcombe who made a comfortable save.

Four minutes later a good through ball released Aron Gordon in behind the Canvey defence, calling Newcombe into action once again. This time the keeper slid out to meet the ball ahead of Gordon on the edge of the box, using his chest rather than his hands which allowed him to slide out of the area before clearing the danger.

Canvey had to wait until the 18th minute for their first half chance, with Frankie Merrifield hitting a decent shot from 35 yards which flew not far over the top corner.

They came close on 23 minutes when a corner from Mitchell Gilbey was headed clear but only as far at the edge of the area where is was met by Ryan Charles. The winger headed it back towards goal, forcing goalkeeper Hugo Rossetti to tip the ball over the crossbar.

The deadlock was broken in the 29th minute with the goal originating from another Mitchell Gilbey corner. This time Steve Sheehan rose to beat Hugo Rossetti to the ball, and although the ball was kept out on the line, Frankie Merrifield was on hand to slam home from close range.

It was nearly 2-0 inside 30 seconds of the second half when Ryan Charles cut in from the left and played a ball across the edge of the box for Frankie Merrifield. Looking for his second, Merrifield hit a crisp shot which Hugo Rossetti did well to save diving to his right. Martin Tuohy was inches away from tucking home the rebound, but had he scored the goal would have been ruled out for offside.

The lead was doubled on 53 minutes when Canvey were awarded a free kick out on the right wing inside their own half. The ball found the head of George Sykes 25 yards out who flicked it into the path of Martin Tuohy, with the striker showing composure to slot home from 12 yards.

Waltham Abbey tried to force their way back into the match and created a couple of good opportunities from free kicks. On 59 minutes Mitch Hahn curled narrowly wide from 20 yards, and four minutes later Henry Newcombe pulled off a good save from Ricky Brennan after a dead ball from the left wing found the substitute at the back post.

Up the other end, two Canvey substitutes combined on 67 minutes when Sam Collins played a tremendous ball in behind right back Jack Daveney for Ryan Melaugh to run onto. Melaugh delivered a tempting ball across goal which Hugo Rossetti got to just before Martin Tuohy could score.

The scoring was complete on 85 minutes when George Craddock delivered a dangerous corner towards Steve Sheehan inside the six-yard box. Hugo Rossetti opted to punch but fluffed his lines and ended up sending the ball into his own net.

George Sykes had played very well throughout at nearly scored the goal that his performance had warranted on 88 minutes. Having waltzed his way across the edge of the box from the left and beating two defenders, Sykes shot across goal towards the bottom corner but missed the target by a matter of inches.

It looked as though Waltham Abbey had grabbed themselves a consolation goal with a minute remaining. First they hit the post, and moments later Mitch Hahn hit a dipping shot from 25 yards which Newcombe did very well to fling himself skywards and palm the shot over the bar.

Danny Heale Post-Match Interview with Simon Pitts