A game, it’s fair to say, didn’t quite go to the script. Top versus bottom looked like a foregone conclusion on paper, but the remnants of Storm Alex meant conditions became a bit of a leveller and Selston showed real grit and determination – and no small amount of flair – to come within a linesman’s flag of causing a huge upset.
From the outset the rain made the game one full of action. Three minutes in and a Jake Gosling corner was met by the head of James McGrady but flashed wide of the post, unable to follow on from his winning goal in Tuesday’s win against Stourport. Four minutes later Kenan Layton tested Sam Arnold in the Khalsa goal with a shot from the edge of the box which had to be carefully held.
Layton put the home side ahead on 11 minutes, lashing a great effort past Arnold after some pretty sloppy defending in the Khalsa ranks.
McGrady and Rikardo Reid combined to put Khalsa level ten minutes later, a pin-point cross by the winger nodded home by the striker at the far post.
But ten minutes later Selston were back in front, Layton again the thorn in Khalsa’s side, an even better goal than his first. Khalsa were back level within two minutes, Lee Chilton slotting home an equaliser from the edge of the box.
After four goals in the first half, things really got going in the second half.
Within two minutes, Arnold had to pull off a good save with his legs to deny Jordan Lambert and moments later Adnan Yussif had to clear off the line from Layton after Arnold was unable to hold onto a slipperly cross.
But Khalsa were ahead on 53 minutes, Gosling winning the ball in midfield, surging into the box, dummying the keeper and slotting into an empty net. And it looked all over two minutes later when Gaz Singh scored a cracker to make it 4-2.
Selston weren’t going to lie down and die. Layton wrapped up his hat-trick on 61 minutes, breaking through the defensive ranks to meet a Jordan Black pass to round Arnold and slot home to make it 3-4. But two minutes later and the two-goal lead was restored, Reid smashing home after a good save from Meehan at a corner.
It was 4-5 on 74 minutes to make things very worrying for the league leaders, Layton turning provider for Selston to unleash Black who lobbed Arnold from range. And just minutes later, with Khalsa all at sixes and sevens, Black smashed what looked an equaliser after Arnold was unable to hold onto a shot only for the linesman to flag for offside.
Meehan saved to deny substitute Josh McKenzie with a minute left of the 90, but with the last kick of the day, Sean Williams scored after picking the pocket of the fullback from an Alex Woodhouse free kick and shooting through the keepers legs to make it 6-4 and ensure Khalsa’s lead at the top stays at seven points.
Sporting Khalsa: Sam Arnold, Adnan Yussif, Mike Perks, Matt Fulloway, Tes Robinson (captain), Alex Woodhouse, Jake Gosling, Gaz Singh (Josh McKenzie), Rikardo Reid, Lee Chilton (Sean Williams), James McGrady. Subs not used: Lewis Worsey, Liam Armstrong, Kieron Whittaker.