In a tense F.A. Vase semi-final first leg Ryan Flack’s goal gave Cray Valley PM a slight advantage over visitors Canterbury City.

Playing conditions were hard with rain and sleet driving in to make a boggy pitch very heavy and both teams struggled to create clear cut opportunities.

There was less than a minute on the clock when Millers’ goalkeeper Alan Walker stretched to claim a headed back-pass and went down holding his leg. With no substitute goalkeeper on the bench Walker was given lengthy treatment before continuing, with defenders taking his goal-kicks.

He was tested soon after when Adam Woolcott let fly from twenty yards but Walker held comfortably.

Former Charlton Athletic favourite Kevin Lisbie was unable to get a firm header on Flack’s cross before Dean Grant headed wide at the other end.

Brad Potter had a half chance for Cray but was off target after a corner had caused problems before Walker made another save to thwart Mobalali Dawodu.

Just before half time Cem Tumkaya made an important block from Grant’s drive.

After the interval, Gavin Tomlin showed great skill to create an opportunity but then fired his shot well off target.

Walker again saved from Grant who shot from a tight angle before Flack broke the deadlock. Having collected on the right wing, he cut inside and looked for opportunities before firing back across goal and into the bottom corner.

Jack Delo saved from Ashley Sains before Oliver Lee presented Grant with an opening but he side-footed his shot straight at Walker.

Grant again stretched the Millers’ defence when cutting back from the bye-line but Walker cut out his low cross with Dawodu waiting to tap home.

Tomlin then had a great chance to double Cray’s lead but Delo made an outstanding double save from the former Dulwich Hamlet striker.

Flack and Tomlin combined to set up Anthony Elgar but he fired well over.

No Canterbury player was able to finish when there was a goal-mouth scramble in the Cray penalty area. It came out to Flack who tried to set up a counter attack but Delo read it well to come out quickly as Lisbie looked to be in.

As the game came to a close, Canterbury looked to try and find an equaliser but there was no way past Walker who made a great save at the feet of Grant before making a repeat save soon after to foil Ryan Cooper.

It leaves the tie delicately poised ahead of the second leg next Saturday.

Cray Valley PM: Walker, Potter, Smith, James, Sains, Tumkaya, Edgar, Semakula, Tomlin, Lisbie, Flack. Sub not used: Babalola, Gayle, Myers, Willock, Hickey.