CHESHAM UNITED 2 BISHOP’S STORTFORD 1
Kevin Watson’s side controlled the first half and went into the dressing room 1-0 up following a superb 25 yard lob by Jamie Cureton in the 40th minute.
But it was very much a case of a game of two halves with Stortford having the benefit of the wind and rain together with The Meadow slope before half-time and the Generals making use of the conditions for the remainder of the match.
The Blues should have made more of their superior edge in the first 45 minutes and netted more than one goal so they were always going to be up against it in the second half facing a side on a four game winning streak.
Kevin Watson had more of his squad available for this fixture with Mark Hughes, George Casey, Marvel Ekpiteta and Jason Williams all returning to the starting squad whilst Josh Simpson was on the bench and came on late in the match.
Dipo Akinyemi, Tom Clifford and Alex Rogers were absent through injury.
On another day the Blues would have taken a point as overall there wasn’t a great amount between the two sides. Both Chesham goals could have been prevented and Stortford had a number of half chances to have doubled their lead before the interval. Marvel Ekpiteta and Jack Thomas had fine performances for the visitors.
Stortford soon had the majority of the possession and in the eighth minute Darren Foxley crossed in low and Cureton’s flick at goal was too close to keeper Harry Isted and then shortly afterwards a Casey cross swept through the six yard box with no one getting a touch.
In the 17th minute Cureton collected a Westcott pass and the striker’s shot forced Isted into pushing the angled shot away for a corner.
Four minutes later good work by Ekpiteta on the right saw his centre met by Williams whose shot was deflected over the bar for another corner.
A rare raid by the hosts just before the half-hour resulted in Jefferson Louis crossing to the far post where Ravi Shamsi’s goalbound effort was well blocked by Foxley.
In the 31st minute, an excellent attack on the right involving Cureton and Casey ended with the veteran striker’s shot destined for the net but Jason Williams got the last touch on the ball as it entered the net and was adjudged offside.
Three minutes later another promising move saw Foxley and Williams play their part and ended with a fierce 20 yard low drive by Jack Thomas that whistled past an upright.
Shamsi struck a rising shot over the angle in the 37th minute but two minutes later the Blues were in front. A long clearance by Tyler McCarthy was headed on by Williams to find Cureton in space a few yards outside the right side of the box and he flighted a great shot over the top of Isted and into the net from 20 yards.
Just before half-time Williams steered a Cureton cross wide at the far upright.
Blues began the second period with a number of threatening attacks whilst the defence looked comfortable but in the 57th minute keeper Isted sent a deep free-kick towards the Blues box and Louis’ header found an unmarked Lewis Toomey who worked himself inside to shoot wide of McCarthy from 15 yards.
Louis was close for the home side on the hour with a shot on the turn whilst substitute Adam Watkins’ shot from the edge of the box was deflected for a corner and Chesham’s winner, in the 66th minute, arrived from the resultant flag kick.
Former Blue David Hutton’s corner from the left, aided by the wind, blew in and over McCarthy and the ball entered the net via the far post.
Hutton nearly scored again after he gained possession of a poor clearance from McCarthy.
An Ager cross flew across the face of the Chesham goal and Watson made a double substitution 14 minutes from the end of normal time and one of those, Callum Jones, making his Blues’ debut, saw his dangerous cross intercepted.
Stortford were unable to make much headway in the closing minutes as the hosts held the upper hand. McCarthy held on to a Shamsi free-kick and then saved well from Louis whilst a late corner caused problems for the Blues’ defence before the ball was eventually cleared.
STORTFORD: Tyler McCarthy; George Casey; Darren Foxley; Mark Hughes; Marvel Ekpiteta; Joe Robinson; Jordan Westcott (Josh Simpson 76); Jack Thomas; Jason Williams (Callum Taylor 87); Jamie Cureton (Callum Jones 76); Dean Ager.
Unused substitutes: Alfie Mason and Max Brassington.
CHESHAM UNITED: Harry Isted; Benji Crilley; Jhai Dhillon (Adam Watkins 55); Matt Bevans; Kieran Murphy; Darren Locke; Ravi Shamsi; Danny Green; Jefferson Louis; Lewis Toomey (Oran Swales 74); David Hutton (Jon-Jo Bates 82).
Unused substitutes: Scott McGleish and Matthew Hall.
Referee: Tom Danaher