|Date||Time||League||Season||Attendance||Dover Star Player||Home Scorers||Red Cards|
|7th April 2018||3:00 pm||National League||2017-2018||1,128||Anthony Jeffrey||Bird (57 pen)||Healey (60), Romain (90+2) (Torquay)|
RYAN Bird’s second-half penalty was enough for Dover to see off nine-man Torquay.
The striker slammed in his 15th National League goal of the season as Chris Kinnear’s men recorded a fourth consecutive victory at Crabble.
Mitch Brundle had the game’s first shot on target just past the ten-minute mark, spinning his defender and firing low at visiting keeper Ryan Clarke from just inside the area.
Rhys Healey, booked moments earlier for simulation in the penalty box, volleyed well wide from close range after a fine initial touch.
Cardiff loanee Healey then cut in from the left and fired towards goal, but Walker was able to dive onto the midfielder’s effort.
Ryan Bird could only head wide after Anthony Jeffrey outpaced his marker and crossed towards the striker and at the other end, Liam Davis lashed a volley high and wide of the mark.
Healey almost had the away side in front, controlling Luke Young’s corner and flashing a volley a mere inches past the post.
And Elliott Romain was almost gifted a goal by the Dover defence.
Kevin Lokko’s poor touch almost gave the Dagenham & Redbridge loanee a clear sight of goal, however, Walker was on hand to gather the ball.
Brundle’s free-kick from the left-hand side almost found it’s way into the top corner, but Clarke denied the Dover skipper with his fingertips.
Brett Williams was then within a whisker of connecting to Young’s wayward strike before the referee blew for half-time.
Following the restart, Jeffrey collected Femi Ilesanmi’s pass and after a dart into the area, lashed a shot onto the foot of the post with the Torquay defence able to clear the rebound.
But Whites had the lead just minutes later thanks to Bird.
The striker stepped up to slam in his third spot-kick of the season after Connor Evans’ handball in the box.
And The Gulls’ task was made even more difficult when Healey was shown a second yellow card following a rash challenge on Connor Essam.
But the ten men of Torquay almost snatched a point. Firstly Young forced Walker to tip away his ferocious 20-yard volley and then was on hand to claw away Romain’s header.
United were reduced to nine men in injury time as Romain was shown a straight red for a dangerous tackle on Gallifuoco.
But Athletic held on for the crucial three points to keep them in the playoff hunt.
Earlier, boss Kinnear made three changes to the side that started at Ebbsfleet on Bank Holiday Monday. Nortei Nortey, Josh Passley and Jeffrey replaced Mitch Pinnock, Ade Azeez and Liam Bellamy, who all started as substitutes.
DOVER ATHLETIC REACTION
|Referee||Referee's Assistants||Fourth Official|
|Carl Brook||Alexander Fisher|
|Crabble Athletic Ground|
|40 Crabble Rd, Dover, Kent CT17 0QJ, UK|