A Princely opening three points
11 August 2012
The Lambs travelled to Princes Park, the home of newly promoted Dartford for the opening fixture of the 2012-13 season and there were little surprises in Marcus Law's starting eleven team selection as the side looked to start the season in a positive fashion.
Dartford got the season underway and Marshall and Breeden were given an early touch with Erskine putting the back line under pressure.
But The Lambs soon got the ball to the other end and Marna unleashed a shot from the right which came back out to Kerry, but his shot was deflected high and went back to Wells.
On 10 Marshall put a far post header high over the target while Breeden was fortunate to see his attempted clearance charged down but go out for a goal kick.
Cunnington on the right found Wright who struck right footed, but his attempt was saved and from the corner Marna hit a wayward shot.
A foul by Erskine on Kelly forced the first change of the campaign as Gudger was forced into action on 14.
Then, from a spell of Dartford pressure The Lambs broke down to the other end and Till finished well from 15 yards to give The Lambs the lead. (1-0, 25 mins)
As the half went on tempers became frayed when Kerry put a tackle in on Noble and a fracas ensued ending with a yellow card a piece for Oji and Erskine.
Then The Lambs extended their lead through a fine finish from Cunnington who took time to pick his spot and lift his shot over the keeper (2-0, 40 mins)
As added time played out Gudger was harshly judged to have raised a hand to Noble and from the freekick, on the edge of the D, Bradbrook fired low around the wall and despite the best efforts of Breeden the ball rested in the back of the net.
While Kelly applied ice to his injured to in the dug out, Barrow had an early chance with a freekick from distance but could only find the wall with his effort.
the home side then forced a number of corners in quick succession but they were repeatedly thwarted by The Lambs resilience.
In fact, Dartford kept the ball in the Tamworth half for most of the first quarter of and hour but Breeden was rarely threatened.
On the hour Harris lifted a good chance over the target following a break from a Lambs corner at the other end.
After a couple of changes to both sides it was left to Cunnington to strike the goal of the game so far with a delightful right footed curling shot into the top left hand corner of Well's goal, leaving the keeper flat footed and allowing the travelling faithful to celebrate in the sunshine even more than they were already doing. (3-1, 76 mins)
However, within three minute Dartford had pulled one back as Crawford headed home from close range to set up a tense final ten minutes. (3-2, 79 mins)
Burns fed Bradbrook in the area but he saw his shot blocked and cleared by Tait as the home side continued to press and five minutes added time was shown at the end of the match.
Dartford continued to press and caused problems for The Lambs with a couple of corners and miss-hit clearances - in fact one corner was headed back across the box but left by everyone before being cleared and the final whistle blew on a hard fought three points.
Breeden, Tait, Kelly (Gudger 16), Marshall, Cunnington, Wright, Marna (Llado 63), Kerry, Till, Barrow, Oji
Subs: Ivey-Ward, Wren, Collins
Yellow Cards: Oji 30, Cunnington 45, Breeden 58
Wells, Burns, Green, Champion, Arber, Bonner, Noble (Wallis 82), Rogers (Hayes 64), Erskine, Bradbrook (Crawford 64), Harris
Subs: Rose, Collier
Yellow Cards: Erskine 34, Champion 77, Green 87
Referee: Mr. A. Bromley