Ashford Town (Mx) 1  Northwood 2

Saturday 26th March 2022


1 Daniel Purdue    
2 Ryan Young    
3 Andy Lomas    
4 Keagan Cole    
5 Luke Tingey    
6 James Gurteen © (74m)    
7 Kyal Williams (86m)    
8 Riccardo Alexander-Greenaway    
9 Josh Helmore    
10 Sydney Ibie (80m)    
11 Carl Stewart    
12 Matt Surmon (80m)    
14 Kristian Belousas    
15 Jesse Boateng (74m)    
16 Will Robinson (86m)    
17 Lewis Batten    

Ashford: Alfie Mcnally, Ben Geraghty, Alex Duffy, George Spiers , Dale Burnham , Clyde Obdo, Connor Holland (David Pitt 73m), Wayne Ridgley, Daniel Brown (Ayodeji Owoeye 78m), Kain Adom, Ethan Hellyer


Northwood returned to winning ways as they dug deep to overcome Ashford Town in the glorious spring sunshine at the Robert Parker Stadium.

Woods gave a debut to midweek signing Riccardo Alexander-Greenaway who replaced Matt Surmon in midfield, while Kristian Belousas made way for Kyal Williams in the right sided attacking role. There was also a return to the defence for James Gurteen with Teddy Stacey missing out due to the ankle injury he suffered against Chipstead.

On a dry bumpy surface, Northwood were quickly into their stride, forcing an early corner. Although the Tangerines were able to clear the early danger, the opening goal wasn’t long in coming as Sydney Ibie capitalised on a lapse in the home defence to fire in a shot from the edge of the box, which took a slight deflection off Ben Geraghty before nestling inside the far upright, giving Woods the lead with four minutes on the clock

Ashford looked to respond with Kain Adom seeing his shot on the turn gathered by Daniel Purdue before Wayne Ridgley tried his luck from distance with an effort which failed to trouble the Northwood keeper.

Woods weren’t far away from extending their lead as Gurteen’s ball from the back found Williams, whose curling shot flew narrowly wide of the far post. And Northwood continued to threaten as Alexander-Greenaway saw his hooked shot deflect for a corner before Keagan Cole’s near post flick from an Andy Lomas corner caused a scramble in the Tangerines defence, with Josh Helmore having his shot charged down.

Ashford offered a threat on the break through the lively Ethan Hellyer but he was denied by a timely interception from the covering Carl Stewart before the hosts had a handball appeal against Gurteen turned down as the Woods defender looked to clear a hanging cross into the box.

Having survived the penalty shout, Northwood extended their lead as Josh Helmore broke his mini goal drought – Luke Tingey’s throw into the box finding its way back to him before sending a cross to the far post which was put back into the danger by Sydney Ibie, Helmore gleefully lashing the ball home on 25 minutes.


Woods looked to put the game beyond Ashford before the half-time break and they went close as Helmore sent Ibie on his way, breaking clear before dragging his shot across the face of goal. However, the first period ended with Northwood successfully negotiating a couple of Ashford corners, their first of the afternoon arriving after 38 minutes, a weak Daniel Brown header from a subsequent attack failing to trouble Purdue.

Playing into the fresh breeze in the second half, Northwood might have anticipated more of a test after the break. But Woods contributed to their own downfall as they let the hosts back into the game on 57 minutes as they failed to clear their lines with Brown’s shot being parried by Purdue and into the path of Hellyer who swept the ball home.

Encouraged by the goal, Ashford appeared to move up a couple of gears as Hellyer threatened again with his shot being touched onto the post by Purdue before being scrambled clear. The Tangerines maintained their improved second half showing with Woods struggling to win any quality possession, Alex Duffy not far away with a freekick for the hosts.

Northwood continued to stand firm and looked to counter when they could, Ibie creating an opportunity with a surging run down the left channel which ended with a snapshot from an acute angle which was parried by Ashford keeper Alfie McNally.

Woods made a couple of substitutions, Gurteen feeling his recent neck injury and making way for debutant Jesse Boeteng, before former Tangerine Matt Surmon was introduced for Ibie as Northwood looked to shore up the middle of the park.

With the contest moving into the final ten minutes, Ashford appeared to be running out of ideas on how to break down the resolute Northwood rearguard, and it was the visitors who went close to increasing their lead as a short corner routine ended with Cole firing wide.

With the clock ticking down, Will Robinson replaced Williams in attack and the young striker made an immediate impression as he was cynically scythed down by Dale Burnham, who would have been relieved to only receive a yellow card.

But Northwood had done enough as the referee called time on proceedings allowing them to celebrate their first league win in five games.