Bishop’s Stortford 5-1 Leiston Match Report

Bishop’s Stortford 5-1 Leiston Match Report 27/11/21


Bishop’s Stortford extended their unbeaten run to 11 games with a 5-1 victory at home to Leiston in the Buildbase FA Trophy. It was the Blues’ fourth consecutive in all competitions, thanks to a brace from Frankie Merrifield, and one each for Darren Foxley, Ryan Charles and Chris Harris, who scored his first goal for the club.


Johnville Renee saw an early cross bounce over Merrifield – making his first start since suffering a dislocated shoulder at Corinthian Casuals – and Jonny Giles in the six yard box, and the visitors managed to clear. The next cross came from the left, after Sam Robbins had advanced from left back, he passed to Giles who beat the full back and landed the delivery on Merrifield’s head, who was unmarked in the six yard box for a simple header into the top left corner. Just four minutes later and Merrifield had doubled up, glancing home at the near post from Giles’ corner from the right. Scoring twice before the ninth minute meant Merrifield had scored four goals in 25 minutes of football, after coming off the bench and scoring twice in the last 16 minutes against Wingate & Finchley last Saturday, and he could have had a hat-trick from the penalty spot. Giles beat the full back again and chipped the ball into the middle where Ryan Charles was ready to volley home, but his effort was blocked and Renee was fouled on the rebound. Showing he was full of confidence, Merrifield tried a Panenka chip penalty, but goalkeeper Sam Donkin parried the effort with a strong right hand. That save seemed to flick a switch for the visitors, sensing that the game could have been over at 3-0, but they were still alive with just a two-goal deficit inside the first 20 minutes. Adam Mills pulled one back for Leiston with a brilliant curling effort past Giddens into the bottom left corner from outside the box, and as the first half went on, they looked more likely to score. Brendan Ocran received the ball from a left wing cross in the box but was flagged offside, and debutant Billy Cracknell was required to clear a dangerous cross by Mills just moments later. The last action of the first half saw Ryan Henshaw head over the bar from Giles’ corner.


HT 2-1


After a slow start to the second half, Foxley stabbed home from close range after Henshaw and Charles had seen shots blocked following a corner. Merrifield could only find Donkin’s gloves with a shot from his left foot from Foxley’s through ball, and Foxley saw his low shot saved by Donkin who parried initially and then grabbed the loose ball away from the onrushing substitute Harris. In a bizarre period, Harris closed down the defender and hit the left post with a shot, before Foxley’s shot hit the right upright and Charles forced a save from Donkin. In a rare attack for the visitors in the second half, Ocran couldn’t capitalise as he shot high of the goal while off balance. Henshaw’s excellent through ball down the right put Charles through on goal, only to be tackled by a defender, Foxley won the ball back though and slid it through to Harris, who shot low across goal into the bottom left corner for his first Blues goal. Charles completed the victory with a screamer from 30 yards, appearing to deceive Donkin with the flight of the ball, as Donkin did not move to try and save the shot.


FT 5-1


The Blues will find out their opponents in the FA Trophy Third Round when the draw is made on Monday, before travelling to Merstham in the Pitching In Isthmian League Premier Division on Tuesday.



Blues XI

1 Jack Giddens

4 Anthony Church (Yellow card 70’)

5 Sam Robbins

6 Ryan Henshaw (c)

7 Jonny Giles

8 Ben Marlow (Sub Thomas 74’)

10 Frankie Merrifield (Goal 5’ 9’) (Sub Harris 60’)

11 Johnville Renee

14 Darren Foxley (Goal 53’)

15 Ryan Charles (Goal 82’)

19 Billy Cracknell


9 Jake Cass

12 Jack Thomas

17 Mark Haines

18 James Baker

20 Chris Harris


Leiston XI

1 Sam Donkin

3 Seb Dunbar (c)

4 Ollie Saunders (Sub Fletcher 60’)

6 Jake Hutchings

7 Finlay Barnes (Sub Godbold 86’)

8 George Quantrell

10 Dylan Switters (Sub Eagle 82’)

11 Adam Mills (Yellow card 14’) (Goal 20’)

12 Brendan Ocran

18 Joe Marsden

20 Siju Odulesi


5 Adam Bailey-Dennis

9 Kai Fletcher

14 Robert Eagle

15 Ben Hunter

16 Ollie Godbold

17 Tom Bak

19 Iuri Fernandes


Attendance 328