BY MARK DOIG
Ring-rusty Welling United fell to one of the worst results in the club’s history when being knocked out of the FA Cup by Sheppey United.
Bradley Quinton’s Wings only finished their pre-season five days earlier whilst Sheppey were playing their ninth league or cup fixture on the same night. However that cannot be used as an excuse for Welling.
All looked good in the early exchanges when Dipo Akinyemi, one of the few Wings’ survivors from the summer squad makeover, twice hit the woodwork. First a powerful drive crashed back off the post and then his header was clawed on to the same upright by goalkeeper Adam Molloy.
However, it was the hosts who opened the scoring in the 11th minute when Jahmal Howlett-Mundle was given the freedom of the six yard box to slot home.
That settled the hosts and Danny Leonard had two good chances, one saved by Dan Wilks, and one curled wide before their veteran striker Jack Midson missed with a header.
Akinyemi fired well over for the Wings before Leonard again found space but his shot was tipped over. Billy Bennett fired wide before setting up Midson but although he beat Wilks, Richie Danquah recovered to make a miraculous saving clearance.
As was the case in the first half, Welling started brightly after the break and Molloy made a stunning save to keep out Danquah’s header from Anthony Cook’s free-kick before Akinyemi poked a shot into the side netting.
The Ites then settled again and Bennett missed another good chance before they scored the vital second. Leonard delivered a corner and again Welling’s marking went missing and Danny Devine took full advantage with a stooping header.
Kaleem Simons thought that he had pulled one back when netting after Molloy beat out Cook’s shot but he was adjudged to be offside then Bennett should have made it three but headed wide.
Molloy made another excellent save to deny substitute Rowan Liburd before Wilks did likewise from a further Bennett header as the game became more stretched. Marcel Barrington had a header for Welling tipped over by Molloy then Wilks saved the final chance of the match with his feet from Leonard’s drive.
PICTURES: DAVE BUDDEN
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