Tony Rickson previews East Grinstead Town v Sittingbourne

Written by Tony Rickson on 25th November 2016

Sittingbourne have the chance over the next few days to avenge defeats in probably their worst two performances of the season.

On Saturday they’re home to an East Grinstead side who beat them 2-0 at the start of last month, and on Tuesday they’re home to Herne Bay, who beat them 3-0 earlier this month.

There’s no better time for Sittingbourne to get their own back, wins in their last three games lifting them to eighth place in Ryman League Division One South.

They’ve won 2-1 in away games at Godalming and Ramsgate, as well as beating fifth-placed Hythe Town 4-0 last Saturday.

That was a super win, rounded off by some excellent goals, but in many ways the victory at Ramsgate on Tuesday night was an even better one.

Whereas Hythe had a lot of experienced players who were caught out by the pace and exuberance of Sittingbourne, particularly on the counter-attack, Ramsgate were younger and up for the challenge.

The Rams were ahead from the second minute and were clearly determined to turn the tables on a Sittingbourne side who have enjoyed some tremendous results over them in recent seasons.

They battled hard and it was only gradually that Sittingbourne played themselves into a winning position, again thanks in a big way to the speed and fitness they injected into the match.

My favourite moment was late on when Sittingbourne broke from their own area and you almost did a double take as it was right-back Sam Welch who led the 100 metre sprint to get into the opposition box first only for Rams keeper Watkins to save well.

Sittingbourne, boosted by the arrival of hard-running Anthony O’Connor up front, look unlikely to make many changes in their line-up for the East Grinstead match on Saturday.

East Grinstead were enjoying a bit of a mini-revival when they deservedly beat Sittingbourne on their pleasant Sussex ground, but have gone backwards recently and have lost five out of their last six games.

On their day, they’re a decent hard-working team and Sittingbourne won’t be able to let their standards slip from the exciting last 10 days.

Last season Sittingbourne beat East Grinstead 2-1 at home with Tom Carlse delighted to get one of the goals against his former club. He’ll be looking for every opportunity to do the same again this Saturday.

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