Denham Utd LFC 0
Gillingham Ladies 3
Report by Jenny Wallbank
Gillingham Ladies were on the road to play Denham Utd LFC in the FA Women’s Premier League on Sunday, May 1. Manager Jack Wheeler made three changes to the starting line up with Katie Hardaker, Fiona Constable and Megan Maslak returning. Gills Ladies dominated possession particularly in the second half and were clinical with their chances to take all three points back to Kent.
Gillingham started the game brightly with an early chance for Megan Maslak and had a couple of half chances through Kallie Balfour and Emma Tune.
Denham had a couple of chances of their own but the first shot went high over the crossbar and the second shot was easily saved by Courtney Shanly.
Gills were passing the ball through midfield and the ball fell to Katie Hardaker who was 25 yards out, with keeper Elizabeth Rose slightly off her line Hardaker took a shot that looped superbly over the keeper for Gills to take the lead.
Gills started to dominate possession but were unable to convert their chances. Denham had a chance at the end of the first half through a long ball into Gillingham’s box but this was well defended by Vanisha Patel and Rachel Ahern.
Half Time: Denham Utd LFC 0 Gillingham Ladies 1
The second half started with a corner for Gills that was well defended by Denham and minutes later Denham made a big shout for a handball inside the Gillingham box but nothing was given and play continued.
Early in the second half Kallie Balfour made a couple of great runs but each time the shot went just wide of the goal.
A foul was committed on Emma Tune just outside the box but the free kick was well defended by Denham and Tune’s subsequent shot went just wide. As another long ball was played by Denham a foul was committed by Vanisha Patel who was booked for the offence, the free kick was easily cleared.
Fiona Constable picked up the ball in midfield and played a perfect pass to Kallie Balfour who took on two defenders and finished in style to double Gills lead. A few minutes after Gills second goal Denham had a chance of their own but this was well defended by Gillingham.
Mid way through the second half Manager Jack Wheeler made his first substitutions of the game with Ashleigh Loosemore replacing Fiona Constable and Shannon Redhouse replacing Megan Maslak.
Shannon Redhouse managed to find some space out wide and put in a couple of crosses into the box but these were easily saved by keeper Elizabeth Rose.
Gills won a corner with twenty minutes left to play, a great ball in by Katie Hardaker and keeper Elizabeth Rose came out to punch but missed and the ball fell perfectly for Jade Keogh who took the opportunity to loop the ball over all the players and it landed superbly just under the cross bar into the back of the net to take Gills lead to 3-0.
With fifteen minutes remaining Gillingham made their last substitution with Lydia Wills replacing Kallie Balfour.
Denham had a couple of chances in the last ten minutes but Rachel Ahern was on top form to clear the ball and Gills continued to press and look for a fourth goal but the game ended 3-0 with Gills taking all three well deserved points.
Final Score: Denham Utd LFC 0 Gillingham Ladies 3
Gills Ladies next game is at home to Enfield Town LFC on Wednesday 4 May (kick off 8pm).
Courtney Shanly, Rachel Ahern, Vanisha Patel, Lauren Williams (c), Lauren Davis, Emma Tune, Jade Keogh, Katie Hardaker, Fiona Constable (Ashleigh Loosemore), Megan Maslak (Shannon Redhouse), Kallie Balfour (Lydia Wills).
Subs: Imogen Alabaster, Madison North, Lydia Wills, Ashleigh Loosemore, Shannon Redhouse.
Cambridge Utd WFC
Elizabeth Rose, Rachel Blackburn, Kim Pendred, Joanne Torr (c), Emma Spencer, Jeta Bytiqi, Natalie Murray, Alissa Down, Lauren Cox, Helen Capewell, Clarice Gould.
Subs: Eva Ramsey, Elishia Allen, Kellie Poynton.
Referee: Ian Skull
Assistants: Chris Hartley, Mark Jacob