Richard Day reports from the Southwood Stadium
The Gills young Development squad ended their pre-season campaign with another workmanlike victory over Ryman League Division One (South) outfit Ramsgate. Unused subs: O’Neill
– Hawkes, Staunton (Freiter H/T), Carter, Brunt, Essam (Coates 63), Maughan (H/T), Morris, Raymond, Miller, Humber, Webster (Blanchard 63) Gills
Unused subs: Groombridge
– Bourne (Harris H/T), Gray (Cornhill H/T), Gore, Murray (Stannard 77), Kennett, Wheatley, Slegg (Quainn 63), Yianni (Thomas 77), Walsh (Taylor 59), Schultz (Granger 84), Chapman (O’Brien 63) Ramsgate
Humber, who again worked tirelessly up front, also saw a low curling effort clutched by Harris late on.
Four minutes from time the Rams pulled one back, Lee made two brave blocks but the ball found its way to Zak Thomas who rifled the ball past the Gills keeper.
Raymond and Aiden Blanchard both went close for the Gills while at the other end Yianni shot wide and a dangerous free-kick was curled across the face of Hawkes’ goal.
Alfie Coates, who had replaced Essam, was brought down by Luke Wheatley, as he surged into the area, and the referee had little option but to point to the spot. Former Reading midfielder Frankie Raymond calmly sent Shannon Harris the wrong way with a left-foot penalty.
minute. th Moments after Warren Schultz had put a diving header wide for the Rams, the Gills went two-up from the penalty spot in the 68
minute but his low cross was turned behind by Joe Kennett at the near post with a number of Gills looking to get in behind. rd A break down the right by Connor Morris almost led to a second goal in the 53
There were two Gillingham changes at the break, Ollie Lee and Michael Freiter replaced Josh’s Staunton and Maughan and it was the visitors that began to dominate, creating a number of openings.
minute, when Humber was played through and he coolly clipped the ball beyond the advancing Bourne from the edge of the area. th The Gills took the lead, slightly against the run of play in the 44
minute with a first-time shot that went straight at Hawkes. rd Both sides were trying to play football, when in possession, but it was Tim Dixon’s side that continued to create the better chances. The pace of Adam Slegg and Charlie Walsh caused problems at the back with the latter going close in the 33
Three minutes later Sam Gore left George Humber grounded as he broke down the left and his low cross was hit goalwards by Michael Yianni which forced Hawkes into another save.
minute, Frankie Raymond knocked in a corner from the right and with Essam looking to get on the end of it the ball fell to Charlie Webster who could only poke his shot at former Gills Youth keeper Ashley Bourne. th The first half-chance for the Gills came in the 12
Connor Essam and Ashley Miller were the only two players in Mark Patterson’s squad with first-team appearances under their belts but it was a fourth minute error from Essam that saw Tom Chapman go through on goal but Daren Hawkes spared his team-mates blushes by parrying the shot.
George Humber and Frankie Raymond with a penalty put the Gills two ahead before Daren Hawkes was finally beaten in the closing stages.