Eastern Senior League – South Division
Venue: Jack Carter Centre 3G
2022-23 Season: Match 51
Wednesday 29th March 2023 – 7.30pm KO
Barkingside: Sky Blue Shirts, Navy Blue Shorts & Socks
Basildon Town: Red Shirts, Red Shorts, Red Socks
Basildon complete good away win at Barkingside in torrid conditions
Barkingside 1 – 3 Basildon Town
Match Report & Photos by Scott W [Twitter: @ScottMHC14]
The midweek match this week saw a welcome return to Frenford’s Jack Carter Centre 3G to see Barkingside face promotion contenders Basildon Town in the Eastern Senior League South. The hosts are one of several sides catching up on games and are keen to finish another tough season on a high, whereas Basildon Town are enjoying a stellar first campaign in the senior strands of Non-League, after promotion of the Essex Olympian League Premier 10 months ago. Barkingside boss Steven Le Sage fielded a mix of youth & experience here, with goalkeeper Hayden West and a defence comprised of full-backs Kunle Bandele & Jordan Cornelius, and centre-backs Naseer Ishanzadeh and Jacob Lodge. Their midfield included Abraham Adjei, skipper Patrick Hoy, and Kevin Zee, while the front three were Ashley Wackers, Vinny Durrant and Ben Agbakosi. Basildon’s terrific recent form (having won their last seven matches) has seen them be right in contention for the automatic promotion spot in this Step 6 division, and they named Matt Knight in goal, a backline of centre-backs Mitchell Keen & Keanu Hill and full-backs Joe Burgess & Thomas Pain. The visitors’ hard-working midfield included Charlie Kendall, captain Ryan Scougall and Billy Hutchison, with the forward line led by player-boss Marcus Bowers, Alfie Hilton and Harry Brown.
As has been mentioned recently, the inclement weather had its say in the early stages of this match as both sides had to contend with heavy rain for all of the first half. It was the home side who started well, as a good pass by Kevin Zee on the left side found full-back Kunle Bandele, and his cross was cleared by the visiting defence, with forward Ashley Wackers ready to pounce. That warning was not heeded though as ‘Side took the lead on nine minutes, as a counter saw Wackers curl in a fine pass to fellow forward Ben Agbakosi who struck home a good finish past visiting custodian Matt Knight. This jolted in-form Basildon to raise their game and on fourteen minutes, forward Alfie Hilton’s cross needed the intervention of the alert home stopper Hayden West, who tipped the ball wide. Marcus Bowers & Lee Bunn’s side were starting to find their rhythm with rapid attacking moves, though it a was a set-piece which found enterprising midfielder Ryan Scougall, his header was gathered by West.
The hosts were finding it more difficult to repel Bas’ good movement and pace going forward, and midfielder Billy Hutchison was unfortunate as his drive at goal cannoned back off the crossbar as we passed the midway point of the half. It was little surprise when Town did level things up, eight minutes before the break – a fine free-kick from Marcus Bowers from left side of the 18-yard box angled in and bypassed West into the right-side corner. The visitors really had the momenum at this point and they did score a crucial second just before the break. After Keanu Hill’s initial long ball forward, Billy Hutchison recieved it just inside the box and slotted home calmly to give Town a precious advantage.
HT: Barkingside 1 – 2 Basildon T.
The second half was a little more restrained but Basildon started strongly. The visitors tested the over-worked West again on the hour as Scougall’s decent set-piece was parried over, before Bowers’ low-strike also drew a good save. Alfie Hilton was also making darting runs down the right channel and fired over as well with a header. Basildon were keeping the ball better in this half as ‘Side had to really dig in defensively to prevent a demoralising loss.
Substitutes also played their part in the latter stages here, but the hosts couldn’t test Knight often enough in the last twenty minutes or so and eight minutes from time, Town got their third goal. Direct from a Bowers long-throw, substitute Grant Cumming’s header evaded the home defence, with his first touch past the unfortunate West and into the far corner which sealed the points for his team.
Full-Time: Barkingside 1 – 3 Basildon Town
In summary, this was an entertaining match despite the awful conditions. ‘Side did start well but you have to respect the response that Town gave and in the end, they more than deserved the three points, given their enterprising forward play and good resolve. The hosts couldn’t quite wrestle back the momentum after they fell behind just before the break and perhaps that indicates why they are in mid-table.
The stand-out performances starts with victors Basildon Town. Central midfielder Ryan Scougall had a very good game, showing high work rate and good passing throughout in an influential performance. Next, a mention for forward Marcus Bowers who levelled the game with a fine free-kick at a crucial time, as well as grabbing the assist for the third goal & also showing good movement. Centre-back Mitchell Keen also did well to lead his defence after conceding early on, making it tough for the ‘Side forwards for most of the game. Finally, Alfie Hilton put in a good display on the right side, showing good pace and crossing too to assist his team’s growing amount of forward moves as the match went on.
For Barkingside, goalkeeper Hayden West made several important saves to keep his team in it, kudos to him. Full-back Kunle Bandele made a number of good runs down the flank and made some good tackles defensively, while centre-back Jacob Lodge also had a good game, keeping things tight when required with good positioning. Finally, a mention for forward Ben Agbakosi who took his goal well and also was a good threat with his pace and direct running, particularly in the first half.
Barkingside | Manager: Steven Le Sage | Assistant: Ashley King
Starting XI (Subs): 1 Hayden West (GK), 2Jordan Cornelius (14 Derrich Assibey 46′), 3 Kunle Bandele, 5 Jacob Lodge, 6 Naseer Ishanzadeh, 4 Abraham Adjei, 8 Patrick Hoy (Capt), 7 Kevin Zee (15 Robert Adams 53′), 9 Vinny Durrant (17 Lee Harris 66′), 10 Ashley Wackers (12 Marley Bryden-Campbell 73′), 11 Ben Agbakosi (16 Maxwell Ntim 83′)
Goal-scorer: Ben Agabakosi [9′]
Booked: Agbakosi, Ishanzadeh | Subs Not Used: None
Basildon Town | Player-Manager: Marcus Bowers | Assistants: Lee Bunn (lead) & Aron Peters
Starting XI (Subs): 1 Matt Knight (GK), 12 Thomas Pain, 5 Keanu Hill, 16 Mitchell Keen, 10 Joe Burgess (15 James O’Brien 84′), 14 Charlie Kendall, 8 Ryan Scougall (Capt), 17 Billy Hutchison (4 Michael Onafuye 77′), 7 Alfie Hilton (11 Jamie Bradbourn 71′), 19 Marcus Bowers (20 Daniel Okah 84′), 9 Harry Brown (6 Grant Cumming 82′)
Goal-scorers: Marcus Bowers [37′], Billy Hutchison [44′], Grant Cumming [82′]
Booked: None | Subs Not Used: None
Referee: James Perry
Assistants: Nathan Buckle & Chris Noble