3:00pm - SaturdaySat 14th AugustAug 2010
The Laithwaite Community Stadium | Att: 1458

0 - 1

Dover Athletic
Dover Athletic

Favourites clash on Saturday

Brian Caffarey
5:35pm, Thu 12th Aug 2010
Woking v Dover Athletic
3pm on Saturday 14 August 2010

Two of the bookies’ favourites for promotion from the Blue Square Bet South clash on Saturday in what should be a very interesting opening-day encounter. The Cards beat Dover Athletic home and away last season in the league and came out on top in the play-off semi-final. But both sides have experienced quite a few changes over the summer, with the Dover camp apparently believing that they are now in better shape than at the time of the play-offs, while Cards fans are probably reserving judgment at this stage about the relative merits of last season’s and this season’s squads. The fate of both sides this season won’t be decided of course by Saturday’s game but victory would be a significant morale booster if either side manages to claim all three points.


In an interview in this Saturday’s matchday programme Graham Baker admits that he’d liked to have kept a larger core of players from last season’s squad but nevertheless says that he’s very happy with the group he’s now assembled. To recap, the Cards have lost the following regular first teamers: Ross Worner, Tom Hutchinson, Jon Boardman, Tony Sinclair, Gez Sole and Harry Arter. The new arrivals are: Lenny Pidgeley (returning in goal, temporarily at least), Alan Inns (central defence), Adam Doyle (central defence), Francis Quarm (midfield), Sam Hurrell (midfield), Andy Forbes (forward) and Dave Gilroy (forward). Graham Baker has also signed Toby Little and Daryn Hennessy, both midfielders, on non-contract terms.

There are hopeful signs that the central defensive partnership of Alan Inns with either Joe McNerney or Adam Doyle will prove pretty solid but there has been little opportunity yet for the players to work with each other, so there must be some uncertainty at this stage about defensive strengths this season..

In midfield Harry Arter’s creativity and attacking instincts will undoubtedly be missed, as will Gez Sole’s contribution from free-kicks and penalties especially. Francis Quarm and Jerome Maledon should provide hard-working support for Mark Ricketts in central midfield, while the hope is that Sam Hurrell can provide some pace and trickery on the left flank to match Moses Ademola’s on the right. There appears to be scope, though, for either Toby Little or Daryn Hennessy to force themselves into contention.

Up front, the situation looks healthier than last season – and certainly much healthier than at this stage last season – with Graham Baker having gained experienced strikers in the shape of Forbes and Gilroy to add to the equally experienced Craig Faulconbridge and the exciting emerging talent of Ola Sogbanmu.

It is arguable that the greater leavening of experience in this season’s squad will help to make the Cards more consistent than last year and avoid the sort of awful ‘blip’ we saw in the New Year. We’ll have to wait and see!


It is perhaps surprising that after all the turmoil and acrimony surrounding Andy Hessenthaler’s departure for Gillingham – which also subsequently led to the loss of his successor Ian Hendon and then captain Nicky Southall – the general feeling is that the Whites may well be in better shape than last year to mount a promotion challenge.

In defence a key addition is Rob Gillman, Bromley’s captain last season. A central defensive partnership with Ollie Shulz certainly wouldn’t lack physical presence! They’ve been joined by Jackson Ohakama and Tom Wynter, who had a loan spell with the Whites from Gillingham last year. In midfield Dover have lost Sammy Moore (now with AFC Wimbledon) as well as Southall. They will hope that Sam Cutler, with Welling last season, winger Harry Baker and Luke I’Anson can fill the gaps.

Up front, Martin Hayes has got two new faces to complement Adam Birchall and Shaun Welford: Ben Hunt, formerly with West Ham and Bristol Rovers (where he had loan spells with Gloucester City and Newport County) and Elliott Charles (who came through the youth ranks at Barnet).

Two last-minute signings are those of Nicky Nicolau, who of course was with the Cards for most of last season, and Kane Rice, a winger who has played for Maidstone and VCD Athletic.


Make sure you get a copy of our prize-winning matchday programme. It includes a pre-season interview with Graham Baker, profiles of all the new players plus ‘The Ranter’ and many other features.


Admission prices are:

Adult - £12
Juniors (u16s) - £2
Concessions / Students - £8

Don’t forget that season tickets are still on sale!

The match is expected to be segregated.

Come on, you Cards!

Whites victorious as favourites clash

Glen Harrington
7:19am, Sun 15th Aug 2010
Woking 0 Dover Athletic 1
Blue Square Bet South
14th August 2010

Graham Baker’s Cards kicked off their second Blue Square South campaign by welcoming Dover Athletic in a repeat of last term’s Play-Off Semi-Final. Both sides showed off numerous changes in personnel, including the new Whites’ manager, Martin Hayes.

The Woking line-up starred five new players starting with Dave Gilroy, who partnered Craig Faulconbridge up front in a 4-4-2 formation. Elsewhere holding man Francis Quarm and left-footer Sam Hurrell both slotted into the midfield, with Alan Inns given the task of filling Tom Hutchinson’s sizeable shoes at the back. The final addition saw former loan star and pre-season favourite Lenny Pidgeley replace Ross Worner, now at Charlton Athletic, as goalkeeper.

The Cards started brightly and quickly came close to breaking the deadlock. First, Inns’ header was neatly stopped by Dover keeper Ross Flitney before neat work from Hurrell, playing in Gilroy, resulted in a skewed shot wide.

As Dover’s counter-attacking tactics began to cause problems of their own the Cards began to look nervy and fell back to a long ball game. Even with the best efforts of Faulconbridge the front men struggled to get involved and the home fans became increasingly frustrated as the visitors gained the ascendancy.

With the game becoming scrappy and disjointed, the opening goal seemed unlikely to be provided from anything other than a set piece. Eighteen minutes in, and Jon Wallis almost provided just that – the Dover midfielder seeing his bullet-like free-kick slam against the crossbar.

The escape was short-lived. Less than a minute later a rash challenge from Alan Inns halted a surging run from Elliot Charles, referee Adam Fielding pointing to the spot. Set-piece specialist Wallis stepped up, Pidgeley doing his best to put the Dover man off his stride. This was just what he did – the side-footed penalty smartly stopped by Lenny down to his left.

This was only to spark the start of a busy afternoon for the Cards stopper. Five minutes later and Pidgeley produced an even finer save, sprawling down to the right-hand post to push clear yet another Wallis free-kick. Meanwhile Charles and fellow front-man Adam Birchall looked increasingly dangerous, with only the final finish letting the visitors down.

As the Whites pushed further forward in search of a seemingly inevitable goal it was the Cards who should have taken the lead. A scrambled clearance out of defence enabled Moses Ademola to break free and he skipped round the final defender with still 40 yards to goal. With both Gilroy and Faulconbridge screaming, unmarked, for the square ball, Moses took on the keeper himself – the attempted chip smothered by Flitney, leaving Ademola’s team-mates perhaps understandably frustrated after the winger’s initial good work.

Five minutes before the break and another Dover onslaught saw Joe Tabiri denied by the legs of Pidgeley and a goalmouth scramble resulted in towering defender Ollie Schulz heading against the bar. All in all, the Cards were perhaps grateful to go in goalless.

Half-time: Woking 0 Dover Athletic 0

Eight minutes into the second-half and the hero quickly turned villain. As Pidgeley attempted to usher the ball from play, Adam Birchall succeeded in snatching it off his toes. Birchall and Pidgeley went shoulder to shoulder across the six-yard box but the striker’s superior pace allowed him another touch before both fell to the floor appealing for foul play. Unluckily for Lenny, the ball landed at the feet of Charles, who had no problem in tucking into an empty net.

The remainder of the second period was far less eventful than the first. With play not helped by the tide of rain, Graham Baker introduced Toby Little and Andy Forbes in quick succession in place of Sam Hurrell and Dave Gilroy. Despite the changes it was once again Lenny Pidgeley to the rescue as his diving block denied Jon Wallis.

Only in the final ten minutes, with Inns taking on the emergency extra striker role, did the Cards really threaten. It was Inns himself who produced the best effort – a swivel and volley producing a spectacular save from Flitney.

Old Sogbanmu was also thrown on in the closing stages but the Woking charge simply came too late as the visitors repelled all attacks. In the end a disappointing result that perhaps doesn’t tell the full story. On the one hand, Pidgeley’s error of judgment allowed the Dover striking pair to take advantage and score what proved to be the winning goal. However, without Lenny’s man-of-the-match display the Whites could easily have gone home with a much bigger goal-difference. There are also positives to take with the knowledge that this will be one of the strongest rivals the Cards will face this season and that a new-look team may also take time to blend and adjust.

All concerned will be hoping for a quick response as battle is re-joined on Monday night at Chelmsford, another of the league’s title contenders and another Play-Off Semi-Finalist from last season.

Come on, you Cards!

Woking: Lenny Pidgeley, Ricky Anane, Aswad Thomas, Mark Ricketts, Alan Inns, Joe McNerney, Moses Ademola, Francis Quarm, Craig Faulconbridge (Ola Sogbanmu 89), Dave Gilroy (Andy Forbes 63), Sam Hurrell (Toby Little 54).

Unused subs: Charlie Turnbull, Matt Pegler.

Bookings: Thomas 28, Anane 80.

Dover Athletic: Ross Flitney, Matt Fish, Tom Wynter, Jon Wallis, Ollie Schulz, Rob Gillman, Luke l’Anson, Joe Tabiri, Elliot Charles (Shaun Welford 83), Adam Birchall, Kane Rice (Dean Hill 90).

Unused subs: Harry Baker, Sam Cutler, Lee Hook.

Goals: Charles 53.

Bookings: None.

MOTM: Lenny Pidgeley – An unfortunate error cannot take away from his fine all-round performance consisting of several excellent stops. (Lenny is shown receiving his award from match sponsor, Peter Jordan.)

Attendance: 1458

1Lenny Pidgeley
2Ricky Anane
3Aswad Thomas
4Mark Ricketts
5Alan Inns
6Joe McNerney
7Moses Ademola
8Francis Quarm
9Craig Faulconbridge ('89)
10Dave Gilroy ('63)
11Sam Hurrell ('55)
12Andy Forbes ('63)
14Charlie Turnbull
15Ola Sogbanmu ('89)
16Toby Little ('55)
18Matt Pegler
Dover Athletic LINEUP
1Ross Flitney
2Matt Fish
3Tom Wynter
4Jon Wallis
5Olly Shulz
6Robert Gillman
7Luke I'Anson
8Joe Tabiri
9Elliott Charles ('83)
10Adam Birchell
11Kane Rice ('90)
12Harry Baker
14Dean Hill ('90)
15Shaun Welford ('83)
16Sam Cutler
18Lee Hook

Jimmy Dack Interview after Woking 0-1 Dover Athletic

Lenny Pidgeley Interview

David Holmes
7:07pm, Sat 14th Aug 2010
Interview with Man of the Match Lenny Pidgeley following today's match with Dover Athletic.

Lenny Pidgeley:

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