Tooting Bec FC v Faversham Strike Force – Saturday 18th April 2023 – High Road

This fixture on paper looked really attractive, with both sides pushing for play off positions in the Southern Counties East Football League, Division 1, one of the highest scoring and most competitive, of the local non league divisions. With less than ten games left this season for both sides this is a must win fixture and it promised some passion and more importantly, goals!

Main Stand at High Road

Tooting Bec FC play, this season, at High Road, the home of Chipstead FC. The ground boasts a welcoming clubhouse, covered standing and a comfortable main stand with seating for about 150. The grass pitch was in remarkably great condition given the recent heavy rain, which had continued into the pre match warm up.

SCEFL Division 1 table at kick off
– Courtesy of

Faversham Strike Force came into the fixture in fourth place, sitting just behind one time leaders of the division, Larkfield & New Hythe and two behind the surprise package, Lydd Town, who sit, somewhat uniquely, in second place despite having a negative goal difference. Manager Gary Axford has been able to relay on the goal contributions of top scorers, Tom Barton, with sixteen goals and Marshall Wratten, with thirteen.

Team Board

Tooting Bec FC found themselves in seventh place at kick off, just two places and two points behind Rochester United, who occupied the final play off place. Alex Keating has top scored with twelve goals this season , for Tooting Bec but manager Matthew Hancock knows that other strikers will need to chip in as the team enter the crucial final run in to the season’s end and towards the goal of making the play offs.

Teams come out in heavy rain.
Faversham Strike Force in the all blue kit. Tooting Bec in white and black striped shirts and black shorts.

Tooting Bec opened the game positively with some fierce attacking play, which pushed the visitors onto the back foot. They were rewarded when, in the twelfth minute, Alvin Turayatemba drilled the ball home to put the home side 1-0 ahead.


Tooting Bec continued to pressure the Faversham Strike Force defence and created chances to score, without success. Against the run of play, in the 37th minute, Strike Force won a free kick on the edge of the Tooting Bec area, which Tom Barton converted clinically to pull the scores level at 1-1.


At the break the teams remained tied in this must win tie. When the teams came out after the break the tension was clear, with both sides being nervous in the final third. Faversham Strike Force, marshalled by the strength of Pankhurst at centre forward, with skilful support from both Barton and Wratten, began to really test the reliable Nkinsi and Soder at the back for Tooting Bec.

In the 71st minute Tooting Bec’s Alex Keating found himself through on goal and squeezed the ball past Harry Earls, in the Faversham Strike Force goal, to put the home side back in front.


As the game moved into the last fifteen minutes, a bad tackle by Lee Sayer led to a scuffle, which saw a Faversham Strike Force player dismissed. It did appear that Sayer would be the player to receive the punishment but whatever the referee saw close up in the scuffle, led him to dismiss, Wren, a player who got involved subsequently.

Faversham Strike Force player departs, after a red card.

The final minutes saw Faversham Strike Force throw everything into seeking an equaliser. Tooting Bec used the pace of Olawole and Turyatemba to create chances in the space left, as Faversham pressed forward. However, at full time it was Tooting Bec who took the three points and moved into the play off spaces.

Players depart at full time.
League table at full time
– Courtesy of

3 Comments Add yours

  1. john says:

    He who dares may win!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lovely little ground Chipstead, was there earlier this season to watch them.

    Liked by 1 person

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