THE duals between Ringmer and East Grinstead have always been a very competitive affair and this match was no different, with the hosts winning out in a five-goal thriller.
However, it also briefly threatened to become an aggressive clash as, in the very first minute, Ringmer’s Mark Price was felled on the ball. The referee eventually blew as the instigators faced up to each other, with tempers overheating.
Thankfully this was the last incident of a needless flavour and the game turned into a very entertaining, competitive match.
The first real chance went to East Grinsted after they made good inroads but finally shot wide of Tom Rand’s goal.
Ringmer came back with good work down both sides from Nick Wheeler and Joe Dryer.
And on 15 minutes Dryer managed to collect a long ball down the left side and got a shot in – but he was adjudged to be offside, and was then yellowed-carded for kicking the ball away.
Gavin Gordon did well a few minutes later after winning the ball in the Wasps area then shooting at an acute angle across the face of the goal.
Mark Whiteman did well to stay upright on the run, after a tackle in the home box, unfortunately his scuffed shot was easily picked off by the Wasps keeper Mark Fox.
Finally, in the 26th minute, Ringmer found the opening goal after Dryer put the ball across with shots going in from Whiteman, Wheeler and Dryer, all blocked; it then fell to Gordon to slam home from the edge of the box.
Then, just six minutes later, Ringmer were caught thin at the back after a Blues corner was cleared out long.
A desperate backtraking failed to reach the lone defenders and a superb run and shot by Grinstead striker Ben Chick evened the score. After the break, Ringmer’s Ryan Macmillan had to make an important clearance in the first few minutes as the home side showed their intention for this half.
However, it was the Blues who almost netted first after eight minutes, good build up play from Whiteman and Gordon Curtis seeing Price shooting just wide.
Grinstead answered back with a powerful shot in which Rand did well to turn past the post.
Another good chance came for Grinstead after Wasps’ Aaron Watson beat the Ringmer defensive line but shot well over the crossbar.
Then, on 72 minutes, Grinstead pressure paid off with a goal blasted in by Tony Reid from the edge of the Ringmer box. And five minutes later Chick slammed in another shot which took a huge deflection; Rand did well to get a hand to it but failed to stop it going in making the score 3-1.
Ringmer rallied well despite being two down, with both Dryer and Price shooting wide.
In the 83rd minute Brad Curtis fired past Fox to pull one back for the Blues.
But the game was up and East Grinstead took the three points.