Leiston 1 Dorking Wanderers 0 match report - Kyle Hammond’s stunner wins match

Byron Lawrence on the ball for Leiston. Pictures: DOMINIC WHITEN

Byron Lawrence on the ball for Leiston. Pictures: DOMINIC WHITEN - Credit: Archant

Bostik Premier Leiston 1 Dorking Wanderers 0 Leiston opened their Bostik League program entertaining the newly promoted Surrey side and included new signings Marcus Garnham, Kyle Hammond, Rob Eagle and Dominic Docherty, whilst Christy Finch returned following a spell with Norwich United.

Byron Lawrence on the ball for Leiston. Pictures: DOMINIC WHITEN

Byron Lawrence on the ball for Leiston. Pictures: DOMINIC WHITEN - Credit: Archant

Also in the starting line-up, making a welcome return, was Byron Lawrence on loan from Billericay Town.

The opening win was hard earned against the newcomers. It featured the sending off of Chris Henderson in the 44th minute and a sensational strike on 65 minutes from Hammond.

Also key to the result was the superb second half reactionary save by Garnham following defender Jack Ainsley’s misplaced clearance.

The home side started strongly with Finch testing visiting keeper Slavomir Huil at his near post and the resultant corner headed inches wide by Jack Ainsley.

Byron Lawrence on the ball for Leiston. Pictures: DOMINIC WHITEN

Byron Lawrence on the ball for Leiston. Pictures: DOMINIC WHITEN - Credit: Archant


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The keeper was then guilty of a poor clearance, but atoned with a fine save to deny last season’s golden boot winner Matt Blake.

At the other end Garnham tipped over an effort from Tommy Hutchings, but it was Leiston who looked the more positive. The referee booked both Daniel Pearce and Jerome Beckles for reckless challenges as the visitors struggled to contain the lively home midfield, but threatened on the break with the speedy Matt Briggs.

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Blake then went close when he fired powerfully into the side netting.

Disaster struck just before the break when Henderson tangled with James McShane and appeared to make contact with the player’s face and was dismissed after the ensuing jostling of players.

Byron Lawrence on the ball for Leiston. Pictures: DOMINIC WHITEN

Byron Lawrence on the ball for Leiston. Pictures: DOMINIC WHITEN - Credit: Archant

Dorking playing with confidence with the numerical advantage showed neat approach work, but the strong home defence was resilient.

However, it was almost breached when Ainsley mistimed his clearance forcing Garnham into a spectacular acrobatic save – and the 311 spectators were then rewarded with a stunning strike from Hammond.

There appeared no danger from 28 yards out but, with the ball momentarily at his feet struck a sublime shot that flew high into the net – a great goal that was worthy of winning any match.

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