Joel Greaves’ late strike gave Guildford City a shock victory at their Ryman Premier League opponents Tonbridge Angels. The Angels had a number of good chances and two goals chalked off for offside, but were unable to beat on form Antony Hall in the City goal. Greaves netted four minutes from the end after Joel Hughes powered past Liam Harwood as Guildford City counter-attacked against a frustrated Tonbridge side.
Guildford’s Jaydon Gibbs narrowly missed the target with the first real chance – a shot from long range. Both teams settled, Tonbridge dominating possession as expected but making few chances. Jack Beecroft went close on 25 minutes and Lee Browning spurned two further good opportunities later on in the first half, before some long range City attempts were stopped easily.
Tonbridge’s Sherwin Stanley had a good chance in the opening minutes of the second half and he had the ball in the back of the net after 49 minutes, but the assistant referee correctly declared it offside. Tonbridge were still on top but City were beginning to exploit their back four as the hosts pushed forwards. Frannie Collin had a good chance after 70 minutes, narrowly missing the target. Tonbridge Angels had the ball in the back of the net again after 75 minutes, but Scott Kinch’s effort was again disallowed for offside by the eagle eyed assistant referee.
The hosts’ luck ran out entirely with Greaves’ winner, triggering pandemonium amongst the City players and supporters. Ben Rayner intercepted a poor pass on the edge of the Guildford penalty area, finding Jaydon Gibbs who played the ball into Joel Hughes on the halfway line. The City striker rounded his marker Harwood before crossing for Joel Greaves to finish at the far post. A tense final few minutes were played out as the referee extended the game by five minutes before the final whistle signalled City’s ‘smash and grab’ progress into the Second Qualifying Round.