Aveley abandoned because of downpour but Tilbury are tops. Defeat for Grays and disappointment for Rock bottom East Thurrock

  Posted: 10.10.20 at 17:33 by The Editor

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TILBURY sit proudly on top of the Isthmian North this evening (Saturday, 10 October) but it's a sad story for East Thurrock United who slipped to the foot of the Isthmian Premier after a 2-2 home draw with fellow strugglers Merstham.

Aveley's hopes of taking top spot in the North division were literally washed away at Histon's Bridge Road Stadium where a torrential downpour swamped the pitch and made play impossible - just moments after Aveley had been reduced to ten men because of a mistimed tackle on a pitch that was in a dangerous condition.

Aveley will suggest the referee made an error of judgement with the red card and say they have the video evidence that will show Harry Donovan's dismissal was incorrect.

The score when the match was called off was 2-1 in the Millers' favour.

They had taken the lead after just six minutes through George Sykes who chased down a lost cause and somehow slotted the ball home from an acute angle and then, after a spell of intense pressure which saw a couple of goal-line clearances, Freddie Gard added a second seven minutes later.

Simon Swinton pulled one back for the home side after 15 minutes but in the end the goals were deemed irrelevant after the heavens opened and the ref called time on the action after 44 minutes.

East Thurrock's Luke Illsey heads goalwards. Picture by Micky Cartwright.

There was disappointment at Parkside for Grays Athletic who hosted Romford in a derby that drew an impressive crowd of 368. It was the visitors who broke the deadline after 16 minutes through Lee Newton, but Grays drew level on the stroke of half time through Joseph Agunbiade and 1-1 was how it finished.

The division's plaudits went to Tilbury who made the trip to Hullbridge Sports and were gifted a 20-th minute own goal by Nathan Scarborough after 20 minutes.

Lee Noble doubled the Dockers' advantage just before the break and though Scarborough atoned for his error with a goal for Sports two minutes into the second half, Tilbury held on for the win.

Sadly for East Thurrock, they couldn't do the same and their search for a season's first win goes on after Jack Leahy's goal six minutes from time earned Merstham a share of the points.

Merstham had taken a lead on the half hour when Calvin Ekpiteta, who has featured for Rocks in several different spells, scored against his former club.

The lead last just three minutes before Kenny Aileru sent the hosts into the break on level terms after converting a penalty.

And things looked good for East Thurrock when Luke Illsley headed them ahead on 56 minutes but Leahy's late goal proved a disappointment - and when news filtered through that bottom club Lewes had won against Margate to step two points ahead of the Rocks the angst was compounded!

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