Carshalton Athletic 0-2 Dartford

THE travelling Darts’ faithful were in good voice at the War Memorial Sports Ground despite a heavy layer of grey cloud as Dartford ran out comfortable winners on Saturday.

Darts made three changes from the side which performed so well at Dover with John Guest, Seun Eferakorho and Brendon Cass replacing Adam Flanagan, Danny Dafter and Cody McDonald respectively. The opening phases were inconclusive, although The Robins, playing down the slope, had the early edge. The game was 10 minutes old when a dissolute Junior Kadi shot wide from a right-side cross.

It was approaching the half hour before Darts produced a worthwhile opening, Cass missing the target after good work from Ryan Hayes. The highlight of an error-strewn half was when Andrew Young turned a Jolly shot round his right post.

The half-time talk certainly proved the catalyst for Dartford as, from the restart, there was a purpose and accuracy about the play, particularly some telling through balls out of defence and midfield.

Two minutes into the half and such a ball found Rob Haworth, who drove into the Carshalton area only to be bundled down by home skipper David Graves who, to most people’s eyes was in a ‘last defender’ situation. Whatever, Mr Surefoot Tommy Osborne despatched the spot kick beyond Simon Overland’s right-way dive.

Faced with chasing the game Carshalton rang the changes, but to no avail as Darts soaked up what little pressure they applied and Andrew Young was able to display some faultless handling. The introduction of McDonald for the quiet Cass lent a more positive air to Darts’ play and Haworth, in particular, was enjoying himself harassing the home rearguard.

With around 10 minutes remaining, the coup de grace was delivered by McDonald, who executed a perfect pas-de-deux, sending his marker one way and taking the ball the other to rifle past Overland and make it 2-0 to Dartford. The Darts’ faithful were happy, as was the now-familiar Hartlepool scout. The referee dredged up several minutes “Dovertime”, allowing the celebrations to continue past five o’clock.

Dartford: Young, Osborne, Gross, Coyle, Guest, Eferakorho, Hayes, Day, Cass (McDonald), Haworth, Noble. Subs not used: Butterworth, Bartley, Baigent. Att: 413.