Jamie Cureton hits superb winner as Bishop's Stortford beat Margate in Bostik League, Premier Division
Jamie Cureton struck a glorious volley two minutes from time as Bishop’s Stortford came from behind to beat Margate 2-1 at the ProKit UK Stadium.
The brilliant winner was the 43-year-old striker’s 356th goal on his 998th career appearance as the Blues kept their slim play-off hopes alive.
A fourth straight win means Stortford are up two places to eighth in the Bostik League, Premier Division and within four points of the top five with four games remaining.
Cureton and fellow joint-manager Steve Smith had to shuffle the pack due to injuries, and they included on-loan Shadrack Ogie in the starting 11 for the first time with Alfie Mason on the bench.
Margate, who were on a nine-game unbeaten run, made the better start and Tobi Sho-Silva shot over from a good position in the fifth minute.
Noel Leighton also went close with a shot and a glancing header, while centre-back Liam Friend had a header blocked by goalkeeper Arthur Janata.
It was Leighton who gave the Kent side the lead in the 26th minute after Janata had been unable to hold on to Ben Swift’s initial shot.
Earlier on in the proceedings, Olly Miles had come off the worse after a clash of heads with a Margate player and, after carrying on for a little while, the young striker left the pitch at the time of the goal with a suspected broken nose.
Stortford had failed to make an early impression, but they were level in the 34th minute as Ben Worman drove low past Kleton Perntreou’s dive and inside the far post from the edge of the box after receiving the ball from George Craddock.
Stortford had a spell of pressure after equalising and Cureton saw an effort go narrowly wide six minutes before the break.
The Blues suffered another blow when Mark Haines had to leave the pitch injured, the centre-back being replaced by Sam Robbins immediately after the interval.
In the 51st minute, Cureton benefitted from some indecisive defending and whipped in a shot that Perntreou tipped over the bar.
From then on, in a scrappy half, Margate looked the stronger in midfield and James Rogers hit the bar from 18 yards. Leighton nearly restored his side’s lead soon after and again in the 87th minute.
But the visitors were made to pay a minute later. The ball was headed down by substitute Luke Callander to Cureton after a move on the left and the forward fired the ball over the goalkeeper and into the net for his 18th league goal of the season.
Blues: Janata, Sampayo, Ogie, Thomas, Henshaw, Haines (Robbins 46), Worman, Craddock (Callander 59), Cureton, Miles (Mason 26), Renee. Not used: Warman.
Margate: Perntreou, Dymond, Mills, Rogers, Friend, Swift, Paxman (Ababio 59), Robins, Leighton, Sho-Silva, Brown. Not used: Kallameier, Fitchett, Mesquita, Bignell.
Referee: Jack Bloxham.