Fisher 3-2 Kennington
Saturday 1 April 2023
SCEFL Premier Division
Scorers: Darnelle Bailey-King (48 mins), Isaac Thompson (77 mins, 89 mins)
A late Isaac Thompson goal gave Fisher a thrilling 3-2 comeback win against Kennington at St Paul’s, in a game they were twice behind in.
Fisher gave starting debuts to Tyron Mbuenimo at right back and young goalkeeper George Taylor, following a busy registration deadline day on Friday and there was also a new face on the bench in Clyde Semazzi. Lewis Duberry returned from international duty to take up his position in the centre of midfield.
The game started at great pace and Fisher could have found themselves behind just two minutes in, when a break down the right saw the ball centred for Muhammad Cham but unmarked, six yards out, he put his effort over the bar, albeit looking suspiciously offside.
Both sides looked to push the ball around on a slick surface and made good use of their respective wide players. A flowing Fisher move, involving Michael Sarpong and Darnelle Bailey-King teed up Lewis Duberry, but his shot ,from just inside the box, gave Mant in the Kennington goal an easy save. Mant was a spectator minutes later when Andres Tobon took aim from fully twenty five yards with the swirling shot crashing off the cross bar with the rebound failing to fall kindly for Fisher’s eager forwards.
As half time approached Fisher were punished for lapse in concentration. Prince Imoru got caught trying to see out the ball for a goal kick and from the resulting corner Liam Whiting found himself free at the back post to head home to give the visitors an unexpected lead.
Half time saw Inesh Sumithran withdrawn from an unaccustomed left back role and replaced with youngster Kaylam Burgess and the 18 year old took just three minutes to make his mark on the game as he sent over a peach of a cross, which curled into the path of Darnelle Bailey King, who met the ball at the back post on the volley to squeeze it between Mant and the near post and level the game.
Both sides continued to play expansive football and Fisher looked the be getting the upper hand with more pressure on the Kennington goal and Mant the busier of the two keepers. However with twenty minutes to go Kennington again took the lead. A quick counter-attack saw Cham receive a long ball out by Mant and he in turn fed Sahni, who cut inside before firing a low reverse shot into the corner of the goal, silencing the St Pauls crowd.
Fisher were not behind for long though, as Isaac Thompson, fresh from picking up March’s goal of the month award stake his claim for April’s, with a magnificent effort, cutting in from the left, coming inside his marker and firing a curling effort into the top corner – ‘Isaac doing Isaac things’ as they say!
The game was very much up for grabs in the final ten minutes, but it was Fisher who seemed to show more intent. Perhaps mindful of a very congested fixture list that sees them play on both Monday and Wednesday this week, before two games over the Easter weekend, Kennington seemed to sit back and Fisher took full advantage. With a minute remaining of normal time, substitute Ollie Milton held the ball up well and fed it wide to fellow sub Clyde Semazzi, who surged into the area before squaring the ball, where Lewis Duberry’s clever dummy wrong footed the Kennington defence and allowed the ball to find Isaac Thompson at the back of the box, where the prolific winger calmly rolled the ball into the far corner.
There was little time for Kennington to respond and with Semazzi showing good pace and clever footwork in his cameo as substitute, Fisher were able to stay on the front foot through added time. Fellow debutant Tyron Mbeunimo also had an impressive debut at right back, with intelligent use of the ball from the former Tottenham junior as manager Ajay Ashanike starts to build for next season.