Tonight’s game was an Isthmian League (South East) fixture between Sittingbourne FC and Hythe Town.
I had considered going to see the Chatham Town replay but decided at the last minute to opt to see Sittingbourne for the first time in a year. Sittingbourne first team coach, Nick Davis, was appointed in May 2022, returning to the club, for a second stint.
A largely new squad are settling in for the “Brickies”, as Sittingbourne are known, but results have been positive, with seven points from four games, leaving them in sixth place. Donvieve Jones has top scored with two goals, thus far.
Hythe Town sit currently in thirteenth place in the league, with four points from three games. Manager Steve Watt returned to the club he left in November 2021 and has made a positive impact, at a side who narrowly avoided relegation in 2021-22. Johan Caney-Brown has top scored so far this season, with three goals.
The Jarmans Solicitor Stadium has a capacity of 3000, with covered seating for 300 in two stands. The ground has good floodlighting and a high quality grass pitch. There was a good crowd of 184 in for the game and the home fans sang throughout!
The game opened with both sides committed to attacking football. However in the 13th minute it was Hythe Town who went ahead with a break away goal by Josh Stirman.
In the 25th minute the visitors extended their lead to two goals when Johan Caney-Bryan headed home to make it 0-2 to Hythe Town.
Sittingbourne clawed their way back into the game on 32 minutes when Ben Gorham followed up to slot home a free kick and make it 1-2.
At half time, with Sittingbourne coming more and more into the game, with Dasofunjo creating pressure, through his pace on the right hand side, the whistle went with the score still 1-2 to Hythe Town.
Within four minutes of the restart Sittingbourne were level again. From a long throw Donvieve Jones rose highest, to nod home the equaliser at 2-2.
Almost immediately in the 53rd minute, Hythe Town went 2-3 ahead again, when Johan Caney-Brown broke away to stab the ball home under an advancing Sittingbourne FC keeper, making it two for him on the night.
Sittingbourne’s players threw everything into trying to equalise again, with the diminutive Addai running himself into the ground. At the final whistle it was Hythe, whose defence, marshalled by Allan and Gray, stayed strong to secure the victory.