Ebbsfleet United defeated a battling Whitehawk side 3-0 on Saturday afternoon to send them top of the National League South.
The game started in snowy conditions on the South Coast, but that didn’t freeze Whitehawk from making a fast start as Danny Mills fired wide with just under a minute gone. The Hawks continued to threaten the visitors throughout the opening stages, but had no solid chances to show for their efforts, the best attempt coming from Ibby Akanbi who forced Nathan Ashmore into a smart save.
The Fleet made the first breakthrough of the match with 34 minutes gone with Danny Kedwell latching onto a good pass by Sean Shields to score, via a deflection. Just a few minutes later they should have doubled their lead, but Bradley Bubb somehow shot wide after another good cross by Sean Shields.
Early in the Second Half, The Hawks again had a good chance to equalise after Javier Favarel struck a lofted cross into the penalty area, but Danny Mills was unable to do enough to connect with it. This proved costly as Ebbsfleet doubled their lead in the 70th minute with Shields capping off a fine performance with a well-taken strike from 20 yards out. The win was sealed in added time after calamitous defending by Whitehawk saw Andy Drury set up Kedwell, who scored his Second of the game and a most crucial goal for The Fleet as it takes them top of the league on Goals Scored. The Hawks however were resigned to a 13th league game in a row without a win.
Whitehawk: Stewart, Shepherd, Harding, Favarel, Marimon, Howlett-Mundle (Hamilton 74), Scales, Southam © (West 79), Mills, Akanbi, Osborn (Abdulla 85) – Subs Not Used: Covolan, Rodrigues
Ebbsfleet: Ashmore, Shields (Cook 80), Connors, McCoy, Winfield, Clark, Rance, Drury, Kedwell ©, Bubb, Deering – Subs Not Used: Miles, Mambo, Powell, McQueen
Goals – Kedwell 34’ 90+5’, Shields 70’ (Ebbsfleet)
Yellow Cards – Harding 45’ (Whitehawk)
Whitehawk Man of the Match – Javier Favarel
Referee – Lee Venamore
Report by Tom Harris. Pictures by David Pillman.