Phoenix Sports 3-3 Hastings United
Phoenix Sports 3-3 Hastings United

Late drama meant that Phoenix Sports ended Hastings United’s winning run in an entertaining game at the Mayplace Road ground.


Although both teams boasted a striker in the league’s top four hit-men, Daniel Ajakaiye for Hastings and Jeff Duah-Kessie for Phoenix, neither scored. However, the teams still served up a six goal feast.

After six minutes, the hosts went ahead. Jeff Duah-Kessie got up well and headed beyond the defensive line for Kweku Ansah to chase. Although he still had a lot to a lot to do, his shot across the face of goal beat Hastings goalkeeper Charlie Horlock, Two defenders, attempting to clear, got in each other’s way and it went in at the far post.

Five minutes later, it became two. Hastings had a corner that was delivered too deep allowing Phoenix to clear. Lewis Clark broke down the left wing and Horlock rushed out inviting Clark to lob and he did so expertly floating it into the middle of the unguarded net.


Ashley Probets of Phoenix then put a free kick over before, at the other end, Jamie Fielding was unable to keep a header down from another Hastings corner.

Sam Cruttwell had a free kick saved comfortably then Hastings had another opportunity after Daniel Ajakayie was wiped out but Cruttwell’s cute free kick was read and cleared by the Phoenix defence.

Trickery by Phoenix’s leading scorer Jeff Duah-Kessie almost allowed the striker a clear strike at goal just before half time but he couldn’t get it out from under his feet and could only stab it over.

Almost immediately after the break, Phoenix came agonisingly close to giving themselves a three goal lead. Duah-Kessie let fly and Horlock made a stunning save tipping onto the bar.


Thomas Climpson had a shot for Hastings that Steve Phillips did well to get down to save before Phoenix were on the attack again.

Clark sent Conrad Lee through but Horlock was out quickly to make another good save, this time with his feet.

At the other end, Jack Tucker wasted a dead-ball situation from a dangerous place out wide by firing the free kick well over. Then Phoenix missed another good chance to score the all important third goal.

Lee sent Duah-Kessie away but Horlock was again out quickly to block.

Those missed chances proved costly as just as Phoenix had scored twice in five minutes at the start, Hastings did likewise to bring the scores back level. First Youssuf Bamba crossed from the right, Cruttwell headed back and Jack Dixon finished from close range.

Then a shot was blocked out a far as Jordy Mongoy and he scored with a composed finish from outside the penalty area.


It looked as though the game was going to peter out into a draw but with four minutes remaining, Hastings went ahead. A corner was headed back across goal and Ajakayie went for a spectacular effort but missed it completely. Mongoy was the quickest to react and pounced to finish.

Horlock’s up and down game took another turn in injury time when a goal-mouth scramble was ended with the Hastings goalkeeper wiping out Phoenix substitute Alex Teniola. Having only been on the field for four minutes, Teniola took the spot kick himself and gave Horlock no chance with an emphatic conversion to give Phoenix the point that was the least that they deserved.

Phoenix Sports: Phillips, Andrews (Teniola 87), Probets, Byron, Young, Barry, Lee (Taiwo 78), Bird, Duah-Kessie, Ansah, Clark. Subs not used: Tagg, Solan, Whitelock.

Hastings United: Horlock, Black, Tucker, Climpson (Bamba 46), Howlett-Mundle, Cruttwell, Ajakaiye, Adams (Azeez-Oluwoirak 46), Mongoy (Lovatt 87), Fielding, Dixon. Sub not used: Walker-Barth, Ibrahim.


Phoenix Sports:

Goalscorers: Ansah (6), Clark (11), Teniola pen (90+)

Yellow cards: Barry, Young, Clark, Lee

Red cards: None

Hastings United:

Goalscorers: Dixon (69), Mongoy (74), (86)

Yellow cards: Black

Red cards: None

Referee: George Warren

Assistants: Joe McKay and Nick Dunn

Attendance: 139

Phoenix star player: Lewis Clark

Images courtesy of Dave Budden