St Ives Town v AFC Rushden & Diamonds


Match Report

St Ives Town v AFC Rushden & Diamonds

Pitching-In Southern League Premier Central  29-08-2022

Well taken second half goals from Tyrone Baker, Ed Hottor and Jonny Edwards ensured that third placed Ives maintained their one hundred percent home record as they recorded a comprehensive victory over the struggling Diamonds in front of a bumper Bank Holiday crowd at the quattro-tech Westwood Road.

With only 48 hours between fixtures on this busy weekend Ives manager Ricky Marheineke decided to freshen things up following the 3-2 reverse at Mickleover. Out went the injured Julien Sake replaced at right back by debutant Kane Lewis. Greg Kaziboni, Myles Cowling and Nabil Shariff were all rested with Enoch Andoh and Ed Hottor returning to the side and Tyrone Baker making his first start of the season. 

Marheineke’s opposite number Andy Burgess only made a single enforced change from his sides starting line up. With loanee Jack Connor recalled by his parent club Northampton Town Jenson Cooper had to come in up front for the Diamonds.

It took a brilliant save from visiting keeper Dean Snedker to prevent Ives going in front after only 53 seconds. They won a throw in high up the pitch straight from the kick off. Johnny Herd’s arcing delivery arrived at the near post where Jordan Williams diverted in goal wards. The ball was heading just inside the post until the outstretched fingers of the diving keeper turned it around the post.

The early pressure continued to come from the hosts. Baker fired over from a promising position in third minute as he cut inside Patrick Casey before letting fly from just outside the box. Six minutes later Dylan Williams got onto a lob through the right channel, but Ryan Hughes exerted just enough pressure to ensure the shot when it came went well over the top.

Diamonds first real threat came in twelfth minute as Ives struggled to deal with a high ball delivered to the edge of their box. It fell to Connor Furlong who hit a snap shot from 25 yards that home keeper James Goff could only parry. Jordan Williams clearing up the loose ball. The same player went close again three minutes later as the busy Jesse Akubuine robbed Michael Richens in midfield and fed the ball to Furlong who this time failed to hit the target from 20 yards.

As play swung to the other end the usually deadly Edwards missed a golden opportunity to put Ives in front. Lewis delivered a teasing cross from the right that somehow evaded everyone in the centre of goal and dropped to Edwards on the six yard line. Unfortunately he was as surprised as everyone else that it had got that far and before he could react the ball bounced off his shins. Even then it still took a diving save from Snedker to prevent the ball bouncing into the net.

Andoh was causing a lot of problems down the right and he came within millimetres of opening the scoring in 23rd minute as he danced past two defenders before cutting in on goal. Snedker spread himself well and just did enough as the ball deflected off his outstretched boot and went inches wide of the post.

Having had most of the early chances Ives were perhaps a little fortunate not to fall behind in 27th minute. A Herd long throw was cleared down the centre where Cooper found himself one on one with the covering Lewis. The two initially clashed inside the centre circle with Lewis left on the deck as Cooper strode on and forced the ball past the exposed Goff at the second attempt. The assistant on the near side initially raised his flag as the two clashed on half way but then took it down again. A long conversation followed between the two officials before referee Jack Bloxham eventually ruled out the “goal” awarding the hosts a free kick for the initial foul.

Most of the rest of the first period was fought out in the centre of the park where Richens and Hottor were generally winning the battle against Akubuine and ex Ives man, now skipper of Diamonds, Nathan Hicks.

The visitors carved out their best chance to date three minutes after the re-start as Akubuine was allowed to scamper through the heart of Ives defence. Fortunately the shot, when it came, did not match the run as he screwed the ball wide from just inside the box.

It was the battling Hottor who lifted the Ives going close twice inside a minute around the 50 minute mark. Initially he robbed a dallying Morgan Worsford-Gregg before driving forward and firing inches wide from 20 yards. His next effort only moments later, again created from a mistake in Diamonds defence caused by Ives high pressing, was from a little further out but it forced Snedker into a save, albeit a fairly comfortable one.

Ives pressure finally told in 56th minute as they broke at pace with Edwards feeding the ball across to Baker in a bit of space on the left. The very direct wide man again took on the defence at pace beating two men on the edge of the box before firing a low right foot effort past the outstretched hand of the diving Snedker and in the bottom corner.

As has happened a few times recent having fought so hard to get in front Ives do not consolidate their lead, but instead concede relatively quickly afterwards. On this occasion ten more minutes had passed before A swift interchange of passes between Furlong and Hicks on the right ended with the latter feeding in the run of Agemoh-Davies who unceremoniously slammed the ball home giving Goff no chance from just inside the box.

Instant reaction from the hosts saw them push forward again and win a corner within 40 seconds. Baker’s in-swinger caused problems in Diamonds defence, the ball dropped to Andoh but he was quickly crowded out with the ball cleared for a throw. Cue Herd and his long throw again caused panic in the box and it fell to Richens on the edge, his clip back into the centre found Edwards unmarked eight yards out. But the big centre forward miss timed his header the ball coming off his shoulder into the grateful hands of Snedker. 

Ives got their noses back in front fifteen minutes from time as a smart move down the left saw Williams feed the ball on to overlapping full back Herd. The left back had time to pick his man and pulled the ball back to Hottor lurking just inside the box. A clever side step to lose a defender and a left footed pile driver that flew past Snedker to billow the net raised the roof on the quattro-tech Westwood Road.

Now well on top the hosts went in search of a third goal to kill the wounded Diamonds off. Jordan Williams almost found it in 83rd minute as he rose above the crowd to get on the end of substitute Kaziboni’s corner from the right. His powerful header beat the desperate dive of Snedker but thudded into the crossbar with such force that the ball rebounded to well outside the eighteen yard box.

Ives did not have to wait much longer to apply the killing blow as only moments later they scored a goal that the teams of old playing on the Westwood Road mud would have been proud of. Diamonds centre back Evan Empochontsif made a complete hash of a long punt down the centre from keeper Goff. Edwards pounced on the loose ball and slammed home his seventh goal of the season somehow beating Snedker low at his near post.

Once again an excellent all round performance on home turf (3G) that sees Ives remain third in the table just three points behind early pace setters Nuneaton Borough. Diamonds on the other hand sit rock bottom without a win in six games.

Next week we can look forward to the excitement of the FA Cup as Essex Senior League Barking make a trip to the quattro tech Westwood Road for a 1st Qualifying Round fixture.

Final Score: St Ives Town  3  AFC Rushden & Diamonds  1   


ST IVES: Baker 56, Hottor 76, Edwards 84

DIAMONDS: Agemoh-Davies 66

Team Line Ups:

ST IVES: Goff, Lewis, Herd, Richens (capt), J. Williams, Milne, Baker (Cowling 74), Hottor, Edwards, D. Williams (Johnston 87), Andoh (Kaziboni 82), Unused subs: Sheriff, Shariff

DIAMONDS: Snedker, Casey, Hughes (Lashley 39), Furlong, Akubuine, Cooper (Sutherland 74), Hicks, Agemoh-Davies, Tee, Empochontsif, Worsford-Gregg (Corden 82), Unused subs: Pinto-Leite, Going

Cards: Yellow: ST IVES:  Hottor (41), Richens (80)    DIAMONDS: Agemoh-Davies (14), Empochontsif (53)


Attendance: 423


St Ives Town manager Ricky Marheineke was a happy man after his team recorded a 3-1 win over AFC Rushden & Diamonds.  After the game he spoke with Andrew Dunn to give his thoughts on the match.

“I’m delighted as it was important to get back to winning ways after the disappointment on Saturday.  I thought we controlled the game and at times I thought we could win the game by a more comfortable margin than we did.

Clearly the big talking point of the first half was the disallowed goal for Rushden.  It was clearly a foul, and the situation could have been made better if the assistant referee had kept his flag up.  But thankfully the referee got it right.

We had to make a change at right back as Julien Saka got injured on Saturday, so Kane Lewis stepped in for us.  Kane has been fantastic for us since signing and he played well for us today.  Nabil Shariff has a slight ankle injury, so we didn’t want to risk him for a full game today.  We rested Greg Kaziboni as we don’t want to over play him.  It was a good all-round team performance, but I thought one of the standout players for us was Enoch Andoh who had a good game.

I was delighted for Tyrone Baker who opened the scoring for us.  On his day, he is one of the best wide players in the league, and not only did he take his goal well, but he caused their defence problems all afternoon.

The squad is in a good place right now.  Every player knows that they are not always going to feature, and I know that I can make several changes to any starting line-up, and they will all know what is expected of them.

We have started the season well, and despite us not being the finished article, it’s great to be third in the early season league table.  We do need to improve our away form though.  Clearly, we are unbeaten at home, which is good, but it would be good to be a bit more consistent on the road.

As for Saturday, well it was obviously disappointing to lose in the manner that we did.  But you must give Mickleover credit as I thought they were outstanding.  They defended for their lives with nine men, gave us limited space and played on the counterattack.  We let ourselves down a bit in terms of game management, but we’ve moved on from it and will learn from it too.

This Saturday is the FA Cup.  We watched Barking in their replay against Leighton in the last round.  Everyone knows that the FA Cup produces a few surprise results so we will need to play at the right performance levels to progress.  Julien Saka will be back in training on Thursday and Nabil Shariff will be in contention too as it gives his injury a few more days to heal.  But aside from that, we are in good shape.

Finally, I was delighted with the attendance today.  The team certainly appreciate it and it’s good to see.  Hopefully we will have more of the same on Saturday and in future weeks too”.

Report by Nigel Howlett. Interview by Andrew Dunn. Video by Dave Hook. Photos by Louise Thompson.

St Ives Town

1James Goff Goalkeeper
2Kane Lewis Defender
3Johnny Herd Defender
4Michael Richens Midfielder
5Jordan Williams Defender
6Callum Milne Defender
7Tyrone Baker 12 Winger 56'
8Edmund Hottor Midfielder 76'
9Jonathan Edwards Striker 84'
10Dylan Williams 17 Midfielder
11Enoch Andoh 15 Winger
12Myles Cowling 7 Midfielder
15Greg Kaziboni 11 Midfielder
17Ethan Johnston 10 Striker
Yellow Cards
Red Cards


Date Time League Season Full Time
August 29, 2022 15:00 Southern League Premier Division Central 2022-23 90'


Club1st HalfFinal Score
St Ives Town03
AFC Rushden & Diamonds01