KENT SENIOR CUP REPORT | Welling United 1 Charlton 1 (Welling win 2-0 on penalties)

George Jones reports from Park View Road

Welling United 1 Charlton 1 (Welling win 2-0 on penalties)

Charlton’s Kent Senior Cup campaign came to an end on Tuesday night as they suffered a semi-final defeat on penalties at Welling United.

Chris Millar had given the Addicks a first-half lead but Alex Cathline netted 15 minutes from time for the hosts to force a shootout.

Home stopper Chris Lewington - who impressed throughout the 90 minutes - made two saves from the spot, with another two Charlton penalties heading off target, as the Wings secured a 2-0 shootout victory to progress into the final, where they’ll take on Dover Athletic.

The opening chance of the game fell the way of the Addicks when, on three minutes, a barnstorming run from captain Aaron Barnes ended with him crossing for Karlan Ahearne-Grant. The striker’s shot was well blocked by the home defence, however.

An important challenge from Welling’s Phil Walsh saw him pinch the ball off the toes of Ahearne-Grant when he looked to shoot on eight minutes and a couple of minutes later Hanlan had a cross blocked, following some good work on the right.

The Addicks had made all the early running and they came close again on 14 minutes when an Ahearne-Grant strike crashed off the post, though he had been flagged offside.

A superb save from United’s Lewington kept out Hanlan, after he burst through one-on-one, before the Charlton forward then flashed a strike just wide on 27 minutes. 

At the other end, Rhys Murrel-Williamson drove a low shot off target, having cut inside from the right.

Charlton came so close to breaking the deadlock on 31 minutes. After an Ahearne-Grant cross had been half cleared, Lapslie met the loose ball full on the volley, forcing Lewington to tip his strike onto the inside of his post.

Ahearne-Grant blazed the loose ball over and, 60 seconds later, the hosts threatened themselves when Murrel-Williamson cut in from the right and fired over.

Lewington had been by far the busier goalkeeper in the opening 40 minutes but the Addicks’ Dillon Phillips was then forced into action. A neat bit of link-up play saw Danny Waldren get in on goal but the stopper was alert to make a great save from his 10 –yard strike.

Lewington pushed a powerful Lapslie shot away from danger shortly afterwards. He denied Hanlan with a similar save on 45 minutes but this time Millar was on hand to turn home the rebound and break the deadlock.

He controlled the ball on the edge of the box and volleyed into the far corner of the net. 

Charlton led at the break. Straight after the restart, Edwards shot over from a tight angle and Hanlan then forced Lewington into a good stop from a tight angle, with Taylor Maloney firing the rebound over the bar.

Murrel-Williamson struck the inside of the post with an angled shot on 50 minutes for the hosts and, at the other end, Maloney shot over the bar after dribbling beyond a couple of Welling challenges.

A clear push in the back on Dijksteel from the Wings’ Alex Cathline went unpunished on 64 minutes, though Phillips was well placed to turn his strike behind and from the corner that followed Ben Martin headed over at the far post.

A smart stop from Lewington kept out Ahearne-Grant at the near post, after the Charlton forward had jinked away from his man, and the save proved vitally important as the Wings levelled the scores moments later.

Dan Walker broke down the right and sent in a low cross that Cathline reached and bundled home from a couple of yards out.

With the clock ticking down, Ahearne-Grant fired a free-kick wide and as it hit 90, Bowry got in an important block to deny the Wings from close range.

That proved to be the game’s final chance and it headed for penalties.

George Lapslie saw his effort saved by Lewington in the shootout’s first kick, with Sam Hatton netting the Wings’ first strike.

Hanlan was also kept out by Lewington and Walker then netted for the hosts to double their advantage.

Goalscorer Millar was next for Charlton and he dragged wide, which gave Matt Fish the chance to win the tie for the hosts. Phillips saved, though, to keep his side in it.

But the save proved to be in vain as Yamfam fired the Addicks’ fourth kick over the crossbar, thus sealing Welling’s place in the final.

Welling United: Lewington, Fish, Brown, Hatton, Martin, Walsh, Walker, Waldren (c), Cathline, Joseph-Dubois (Amu 63), Murrel-Williams.

Subs (not used): Agu, Hart, Richards, Fuseini.

Goal: Cathline 75

Booked: Cathline 78 (dissent), Hatton 87 (foul on Barnes), Maloney 90 (handball)

Charlton: Phillips, Barnes (c), Bowry, Dijksteel, Edwards, Maloney, Lapslie, Carter (Yamfam 81), Millar, Hanlan, Ahearne-Grant.

Subs (not used): Beeney, Sarpong-Wiredu, Simpson, Willis.

Goal: Millar 45

Booked: Dijksteel 28 (foul on Cathline), Bowry 89 (foul on Waldren)

Attendance: 337

Referee: D Bonneywell
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