Keynsham Town 3-3 STM Sports AFC
Keynsham welcome their Welsh opponents to the AJN Stadium on a warm Saturday afternoon and soon exerted their dominance over their international opposition. It only took Tom Harris 58 seconds to control a switched long ball from Ben Harris and fire past the despairing James Peckham in goal.
There was then a spell of heavy Keynsham pressure but STM still looked dangerous on the counter as they grew into the game. The K’s keeper Ben Nicholls was called into action on 6 minutes to save well from a counter attack. Peckham remained the busier of the two keepers in the first 20 minutes with Ben Harris forcing a number of saves. Sam Duggan struck from outside the box calling for the visiting keeper to pull off a one handed save to keep the deficit to just the one goal.
Christopher ‘Nipper’ Worsley tested Nicholls again with a deflected shot from a counter attack. STM were growing into the game on the 20 minute mark and soon converted their chances into goals as they came forward more regularly. On the 23rd minute the scores were level.
Joshua Graham held off a Keynsham defender to slot home inside the box. Despite their best efforts Keynsham couldn’t get their two wingers on the ball as much as they had done in the opening period and STM’s confidence was high. Nicholl’s cross bar rattled on 36 minutes from a fiercely struck long shot after some neat build up play and quick passing moves.
On 39 minutes STM took the lead thanks to the quick feet of Nipper and Graham; who managed to chip the on rushing Nicholls for his second goal.
Keynsham tried to play neat passing football from their goal kicks but STM were wise to this and soon added to their tally just before half time. It was the understanding of Graham and Nipper that undid the Keynsham back four again. Graham managed to get to the byline to pull the ball back to the edge of the box for the unmarked Nipper to finish well.
So the teams went in at half time with Keynsham having a lot to do if they were to save this game; 3-1 to STM Sports AFC.
Keynsham manager Chirs King would have been happy with his team’s reaction to his half time team talk; the K’s pulling a goal back in under two minutes of the restart. Nicholls was now kicking long which allowed Duggan to feed Tom Harris; who beat Peckham at his near post.
STM still came forward well in the second half with Nicholls called into action to stop number 11 scoring from a well placed through ball.
The equalising goal came on 75 minutes with Ben Harris getting himself on the score sheet this time. Poor concentration from a short goal kick allowed Harris to pinch the ball in the box and take it around Peckham to make it 3-3.
Both sides had chances to win it in the closing 15 minutes with 11 coming closest for STM but took too many touches before shooting. Pat Davison then had his shot blocked on the line at the other end for Keynsham as the game finished 3-3.