When these teams met last month, the home side deservedly won 3-2 with the visitors making the score look more respectable by getting their second goal in injury time.
Funny, but that’s just how this one turned out with Sittingbourne having the tables turned decisively on them by play-off hopefuls Walton Casuals.
In fact, that excellent home win over Walton in December was the last time Sittingbourne won a match, as this defeat continued a disappointing run of seven games without a victory.
Walton are a very decent side, well practiced at playing on the 3G pitch they share at Whyteleafe, and dangerous in the way they run at players and attack with pace.
But, as their record shows, they’re vulnerable at the back – Sittingbourne scored twice though didn’t really do enough to get anything from the game.
With a wide selection choice after three weeks without a game, manager Nick Davis put an emphasis on youth, and the 16 didn’t include experienced players such as Hicham Akhazzan, Ricky Gundry, Remmell Davis, Anthony O’Connor and Dan Tanner.
But the youngsters preferred in attack after scoring in the last game three weeks previously, Josh Wisson and Jake Embery, both limped off injured in the second half.
And before that, Davis had already made another substitution, with Stefan Wright removed from midfield, where Sittingbourne were struggling to hold their own, and Conrad Lee going back in there.
Sittingbourne started well enough but Casuals got the benefit of an early goal, a set piece from their first corner of the match.
Goalscoring defender-captain Cheadle raced to the near post to shoot first time past Simon Overland.
The Brickies keeper went on to pull off two excellent first half saves and at the other end the Walton keeper made a good save to keep out Danny Rumbol’s header.
Sittingbourne equalised on 20 minutes when Wisson swept in his third goal in as many games, converting a loose ball after Embery’s miscued shot fell to him.
Walton, spurred on as before by the impressive Sammoutis in midfield, pushed forward with Wright and Joe Loft both picking up bookings as they tried to stop players running past them.
Sittingbourne defended well, though, and with Sam Welch twice in terrific positions to clear off the line, they looked like picking up a point the longer the second half went on.
But the pacy and clever Hudson undid them twice in the last 10 minutes, running at and committing defenders before sweeping the ball in. He deftly dumped two defenders on their backsides on his way to scoring his second.
Sittingbourne at last worked out how to break down the Walton defence – along the artificial ground with swift passing, just as the home team had tried to do to them all game. And it paid off in added time when Tom Carlse and Lee combined down the left to send Tom Brunt through to neatly beat the advancing keeper.
Sometimes, as against Greenwich Borough, Dorking Wanderers and Tooting & Mitcham, you have to hold your hands up and admit the better side won on the day.
Sittingbourne have plenty of games left this season up against sides who aren’t as quick, skilful and organised as Walton Casuals. That’s when they need to be on top of their game to halt their poor run of results.
Ken Medwyn's photographs are here CLICK HERE
Jordan Cheadle 10 mins
Malachi Hudson 81 & 88 mins
Josh Wisson 20 mins
Tom Brunt 90 mins
Referee: Mr C Green
Assistants: Mr A Bennett
Mr N Owen
Conrad Lee (Yellow)
Joe Loft (Yellow)
Stefan Wright (Yellow) (Hassan Jelloh 31 mins)
Jake Embery (Steven Ita 66mins)
Josh Wisson (Connor Wilkins 62 mins)
Substitutes not used: Tom Carr, Bradley Schafer
Substitutes not used: Sol Pinnock, Dan Choules, Matt Anton, John-Prince Rylah, Jonathan Babwana
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