Cray Wanderers final away league game of the Isthmian  South season ended in defeat as Walton Casuals put an end to Cray’s seven game unbeaten run after a devastating opening 20 minutes which saw six goals and a hat-trick for Josh Kelly. 

Cray Wanderers who finished the game with ten men drop one place down to fourth in the table whilst Walton who were seventh at the start of play moved back into the top 6 with the win.

The scene was set from the start for a very attacking contest but no could foresee such a whirlwind opening to the game.  It was Cray who began the quicker taking the lead after just three minutes.  Some great play down the right by Ben Mundele saw a driven cross to the near post diverted into the net by Michael Freiter from six yards and the game took off from there.

A minute later Walton levelled when Josh Kelly who had 22 league goals going into the game fired home down the right to make it 1-1 with just four minutes gone.

In the eighth minute Cray regained the lead when from a free kick out by the left touchine, Freiter’s great ball to the near post was left by Charlie MacDonald for captain Lea Dawson to score from five yards out.

Cray came close shortly after to making it 3 1 but it was Walton who got back into it for a second time in the 12th minute when they were awarded a penalty when Zak Henry was harshly penalised for a foul on Youssef Bamba.  Harry Mills spot kick was very well saved by Nick Blue but Kelly reacted quickest to tuck home the rebound.

In the 14th minute and with barely time to draw breath, Walton went in front for the first time as Dominic Ogun made a run down the left and his ball across was despatched first time by Kelly to complete his hat-trick.  

Four minutes later, Walton scored a fourth goal worked down the left by Tyrell Richardson-Brown and his cross was crashed home by Bamba.

The game settled a bit after that although Freiter hit a free kick just over and MacDonald hit the post before half time.

In the second half the game went from end to end but Cray were unlucky when MacDonald cutting in from the left crashed a shot against the underside of the crossbar and efforts from Junior Dadson and a header from Lea Dawson were well saved by Denzel Gerrar and Aaron Rhule shot wide.

Walton scored a fifth goal to end the contest in the 83rd minute when a left wing cross was met impressively by Kelly to curl a shot into the top left corner for his fourth goal of the game.

With four minutes to go Cray were reduced to ten men when Mitchell Nelson was sent off for violent conduct.

Cray are on 86 points in fourth place, one behind third placed Greenwich Borough in the battle for a home playoff game.  Hythe are fifth one point behind while Walton are sixth on 83 points level with Corinthian Casuals who have a game in hand.  Cray do however have an exceptional goal difference on +62.  Cray finish their league programme next Saturday at home to Guernsey, 3pm kick off.

Cray Wanderers: Nick Blue, Ben Mundele, Mitchell Nelson, Jay Leader, Zak Henry, Lea Dawson (Capt.), Michael Freiter (Karl Dent, H/T, Marcus Evans, 90)), Kyron Farrell (Brandon Scott, 22), Charlie MacDonald, Aaron Rhule, Junior Dadson: Subs: Michael Power, Joe Vines

Att: 186