Hard fought Town win decided by fine margins
Enfield Town 3 Thurrock 1
After a quiet first half in terms of chances created, there was more goalmouth action after the break in this closely contested game.
It took five minutes for Town to open the scoring. A poor back pass was intercepted by Elliot Benyon, and he took the ball round Jake Jessop in the visitors’ goal, only to hit the inside of the post. Luckily for Town skipper and man-of-the-match Simon Thomas was on hand to turn in the rebound, despite the attentions of a couple of defenders.
After a free-kick from Joe Christou had found Charlie Stimson, Joe Wright was called into action to keep out the striker’s effort with a low save. Wright save again from Ronnie Winn, while Jessop kept out Drew Roberts on three occasions: from a free-kick, from a Thomas flick on, and finally when he tipped a fierce effort round the post.
Soon afterwards Benyon couldn’t quite get his head onto John Kyriacou’s cross from the right, Thurrock went straight onto the attack after that incident, and veteran striker Dennis Oli found himself in space after a neat interchange with Joel Nouble to calmly slot home past Wright.
The half ended with a John Kyriacou effort being tipped over by Jessop and Thurrock sub Aruna Kamara heading wide. Darren Purse was forced to withdraw from the action after a clash of heads with George Winn.
Half-time: Enfield Town 1 Thurrock 1
It was a different story in the second half as the hosts created and missed enough chances to have won comfortably. Town went back into the lead in the 50th minute when Adam Martin and Kyriacou combined well on the right to set up Thomas for his second from close range.
Stimson’s snapshot flew just wide and a long range effort from Remi Sutton was caught by Wright, but it was predominantly Town in search of a third killer goal for the majority of the second half. An Aaron Green chip was inches off target and subsequently the Town wide man, who had switched to the right hand side after the break, had a free-kick gathered by Jessop. Benyon headed wide from Mickey Parcell’s cross and Greene was then wide from Martin’s set-up from the right. Taylor McKenzie’s header landed on the roof of the visitors’ net and sub Ryan Blake hit a post.
Thurrock had their chances, none more so than in the final minute when Wright made a great save inches from his goal line diving bravely at the feet of a couple of Thurrock forwards to preserve Town’s precious lead. The pressure for home supporters was released in added time when Jessop came racing off his line and Blake flicked it past him to net confidently from an acute angle.
Enfield Town: Joe Wright, John Kyriacou (Mickey Parcell 70), Danny Rumens, Taylor McKenzie, Darren Purse (Rob Bartley 46), Adam Martin, Ryan Blackman, Drew Roberts (Ryan Blake 78), Elliot Benyon, Simon Thomas, Aaron Greene. Unused subs: Jack Hockney, Steve Wales.
Thurrock: Jake Jessup, Reece Morgan, Remi Sutton, Jordan Clark, George Winn, Jeremiah Kamanzi (Timothy Ogunrinde 89), Joe Christou, Dennis Oli, Charlie Stimson, Ronnie Winn (Reion McFarlane 73), Joel Nouble (Aruna Kamara 25). Unused subs: James Scammell, Mark Stimson.