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Ryman Division 1 South
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Wednesday, 17 June 2009
RAMSGATE boss Jim Ward says the returning Sam Jones will help the club secure promotion out of Ryman League Division One South next season, writes Stephen McCartney.
Ward admits losing seven players last summer was a massive blow for the Thanet side, especially as they went on to finish at the foot of the Ryman Premier League table.
Five of them, Lawrence Ball, Ollie Schulz, Shaun Welford, Dean Hill and midfielder Jones, all went on to comfortably clinch the Ryman Premier League title for Dover Athletic, whilst goalkeeper Paul Wilkerson retired and right-back Ashley Burton left to study at Portsmouth University.
Ward, speaking to www.kentishfootball.co.uk this lunchtime, is delighted that former Sunday League player Jones has opted to return to Southwood Stadium after a season playing for Andy Hessenthaler at Crabble.
“I’ve signed the boy Jones, Sam Jones, who I think will be one of the top players in the division next year,” said Ward.
“He came to us late in the (2007-200 season, I picked him up from Sunday morning football and to be fair he played for us and then he caught the eye of (Dover Athletic assistant manager) Darren Hare when he was watching the other players that they nicked off us.
“He was at college at Kingstonian and Dover were training a bit closer to home and to be fair they are a big club Dover.
“He went to Dover and he found it difficult to get in (their team), but we welcome him back with open arms.
“I never begrudge him the opportunity to go there. I never fell out of him obviously, because he’s come back and signed for me.
“He’s a good player, he knows how to beat a man and he knows how to score a goal.”
With defensive rock Nick Davis already signed a one-year contract for Tonbridge Angels, striker Steffan Ball is expected to sign for another Ryman Premier League side, Tooting & Mitcham United, according to the Rams boss.
“Well, with Steffan going and Nick Davis, it’s an end of an era,” said Ward.
“They were big players at the time for us but you’ve got to move on. We’ve only got one London lad now and that’s Aaron Firth – we’ve concentrated on closer to home.”
Ramsgate report back to pre-season training on Tuesday, 30th June, and Ward is looking forward to running his eyes over his trialists.
But he insists the team-spirit, that went missing last season, has returned in abundance.
“We’ve got all sort of lads coming along, we’ve invited some people down to keep them quiet for a minute,” said Ward.
“I need a left back and a centre half still. Maybe the ones who are at the club will do that job for me anyway, but I’m in the market for a left-back and a centre half.
But Ward insists his squad are gunning to bounce back at the first attempt.
“The boys are all raring to go,” he said. “The players are on the phone all the time, telling me that they think we’ve got a squad that’s capable of doing very well in the division.
“I’m delighted all my experienced midfield players are staying on like (Warren) Schulz, (Simon) Pettit, (Andy) Hadden) and (Ben) Laslett.”
Reflecting on what went wrong last season, Ward said, “We had too many changes last year, too many of the big names went.
“I’ve got some great players at the club, we’ve got to get it right, off the pitch especially and we’ve got to get the training right."
The Scotsman added: “I never stop learning, I’ve been a manager for 20-odd years, I’m learning every week.”
Visit Ramsgate’s website: www.ramsgate-fc.co.uk
0 Comments 214 weeks
Monday, 01 December 2008
RAMSGATE will have to break their home duck, if they’re to keep their hands on the Ryman League Cup, writes Stephen McCartney.
The Rams became the first Kent club to win the silverware, following their win over AFC Sudbury in the final at Dartford’s Princes Park Stadium eight months ago.
After the game finished goal-less after extra time, Stuart Vahid thumped home the tenth and match-winning penalty, after now departed goalkeeper, Paul Wilkerson dived to keep out Shane Wardley’s nervously taken spot-kick.
Chatham Town, a side that’s struggling in the bottom five in the Ryman League Division One North table with 14 points from 19 games, are more than capable of extending the Rams’ miserable run at home.
Before this season, Southwood Stadium was known to be a fortress, but a vastly improved playing surface has seen the opposite.
AFC Hornchurch, Tonbridge Angels, Maidstone United, Horsham, Staines Town, Tooting & Mitcham United, Canvey Island, Carshalton Athletic, Hendon and Bognor Regis Town have all enjoyed their trips to the red side of Thanet this season.
Rams boss Jim Ward, speaking to www.kentishfootball.co.uk on the eve of the showdown with Steve Binks’ side, believes Saturday’s impressive 3-0 win at Ashford Town (Middlesex) will give his side the belief to end their barren home run.
“We kept our first clean sheet for a long time Saturday,” he said. “Everybody’s fit tomorrow night, I’m hoping to keep the same back four.
“I’ll just treat it as another game. I won’t be resting players. It will be treated like just another fixture.
“If we get beat there will be no excuses that we’ve rested players for the cup game.
“It will be lovely for the club to get back-to-back clean sheets, that’s why we’re taking it as another game of football.
“We’ve had a lot of fun in this competition last year and we would like to go down the same road again.”
Two goals from striker Jay May, taking his tally up to eight since his move from Bromley, and a volley from defender Ryan Royston ensured Ramsgate came away from Short Lane with a 3-0 victory.
And Ward said: “We were superb, we passed the ball for fun Saturday. It was just a good all round performance, really strong.”
“I know a few of their players,” he said. “It’s the same thing again. You must apply yourselves properly or we’ll get beat.
“We certainly don’t want to get beat. We haven’t won a home game all year so I hope this is the start of a good run at home.”
Meanwhile, Ward drafted in winger Seb Schoburgh from Maidstone United last Friday and the former Dulwich Hamlet and Sittingbourne player is expected to make his second appearance for the club against the Medway side, having made a substitute cameo role in Middlesex.
“He’s like the road runner, that’s what the guys call him,” said Ward.
“He certainly gives us pace, that’s one thing. He only touched the ball twice Saturday and he was flying.”
Visit Ramsgate’s website: www.ramsgate-fc.co.uk
Visit Chatham Town’s website: www.chathamtownfc.net
Ramsgate v Chatham Town
Ryman League Cup Second Round
Tuesday 2nd December 2008
Kick Off 7:45pm
At Southwood Stadium, Prices Avenue, Ramsgate, Kent CT11 0AN
0 Comments 242 weeks
Kent Senior Cup First Round
Tuesday 11th November 2008
Stephen McCartney reports from Hayes Lane
JIM WARD was pleased that he “got one over” his opposite number Ian Jenkins, as his Ramsgate side knocked out last season’s Kent Senior Cup finalists at the first stage of this season’s competition.
After Cray missed an early penalty, Steffan Ball, playing out wide, opened the scoring after just ten minutes to put Ramsgate in the box seat.
But Leigh Bremner, who returned to Cray Wanderers last night from Ryman Premier League side Carshalton Athletic, levelled in the 53rd minute, but former Bromley striker, Jay May glanced home the winner - his sixth goal for the Rams - with 21 minutes of this low-key first round tie remaining.
Ramsgate were the first side to book their place in the last eight of this season’s competition and Welling United later joined them, as they needed extra time to knock out Sittingbourne, winning 3-2 at Park View Road.
Cray boss Jenkins made a total number of nine changes to his side that started Saturday’s defeat, which resulted in a flattering 4-0 win for Fleet Town here at Hayes Lane.
Full-time side Ebbsfleet United had defeated the Wands by the same scoreline to lift the Kent Senior Cup in late July.
Central defender, Michael Munday and Colin Luckett reclaimed their shirts, and Jenkins admitted afterwards that he was pleased with Munday, Jamel McCann and Scott Manzi’s performance - three players that have recently taken their chances, following promotion from the reserve side.
But Luckett wasted an excellent chance to give the hosts a seventh minute lead from the penalty spot.
Scott Kinch, playing up front, exchanged a slick one-two with his strike partner Bremner, and as he tried to poke his shot towards goal he was upended by Dan Tanner.
Jack Delo, who came in to replace Danny Twyman in goal tonight, dived to his left to beat out Luckett’s left-footed penalty.
Cray Wanderers, meanwhile, were made to pay for that miss as Ramsgate opened the scoring just 197 seconds later.
Left-back, Grant Duff, delivered a free-kick from right in front of the home dug-out into the Cray Wanderers’ penalty area and this was flicked across the penalty area by May and the ball fell nicely for Ball to stab the ball past Jack Bradshaw from six-yards.
Ramsgate made four changes to the side that were thumped 5-1 at home to Hendon at the weekend, as Danny Twyman, Jake Eastwood, Ben Laslett and Warren Schulz were all dropped to the bench.
After Ball netted his fifth goal of the season, both sides were hitting too many over hit balls that rolled harmlessly to the opposing goalkeepers.
But the game sparked into life after 22 minutes when Bremner did well to shrug off a couple of challenges down the left-hand side before cutting the ball back to the unmarked Jamie Wood.
This resulted in the central midfielder unleashing a left-footed drive from 30-yards, which bounced once in front of Delo, but the former Herne Bay goalkeeper turned the shot around his post, diving low to his left.
Delo then made his third smart save as he blocked Kinch’s effort following Mark Hammond’s corner from the left.
Luckett joined in an attack to float a 37th minute cross into the penalty area, which was brought under control by Kinch’s chest, before the former Tonbridge Angels central midfield rock, cracked an over-head kick, which bounced wide.
Ramsgate’s right-back Danny Walder then stroked a 30-yard shot into Bradshaw’s grateful arms after he found space in the middle of the park.
Wood’s second long range left-footed drive from 35-yards, was comfortably saved by Delo, as the ball bounced into his arms.
But Cray Wanderers levelled as Bremner scored with his first chance - after 53 minutes.
The ball was played forward from a crowded midfield area and Bremner, who scored 13 goals for Folkestone Invicta last season, picked up the ball, just left of centre.
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