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Dartford's Tom Murphy says Bank Holiday double makes waiting for a first-team chance worthwhile

By Matthew Panting

Tom Murphy put a tough season behind him to fire Dartford back into National League South play-off contention on Monday.

Murphy came off the bench to strike twice in the last three minutes against Billericay.

He has started just eight games all season but that frustration was forgotten as he enjoyed his time back in the spotlight.

Tom Murphy has struggled to hold down a regular place at Princes Park this season Picture: Andy Jones
Tom Murphy has struggled to hold down a regular place at Princes Park this season Picture: Andy Jones

"Days like this are why you want to keep playing football, because when you do things like that it does feel really good," said Murphy.

"It’s been frustrating. It’s not gone how I wanted this season but you have to get on with it.

"You can’t let your head go down, you have to keep going and wait for your chance. Then when you do get your chance, you have to take it.

"People say it’s rolling back a few years but hopefully I’ve still got it, and can still do that. I just want to get a few more chances."

Murphy played in a central role after replacing the injured Darren McQueen with 17 minutes left.

Two sublime finishes later, and a one-goal deficit was turned around in a flash.

"They just said go on and if I get a chance to hit the target," revealed Murphy. "The rest is something I didn’t expect.

"For the first goal, it just dropped for me. If anything I had too much time but I picked my spot early and just placed it.

"When I picked up the ball out of the net at 1-1, their player kicked it away and I had to chase after it and put it back on the spot.

"I looked at the clock and it said 87 minutes so I thought we still had a chance. If we could put some pressure on them, we had the momentum.

"The second one, once your confidence is up, sometimes everything you hit just goes in.

"My first touch was very good, I shifted it with my next and then shot across goal. It went through the player’s legs and when it does that it normally goes in."

It sets Dartford up for a final-day showdown against Oxford City. Results need to go their way but Murphy knows the Darts need to get their own house in order first.

"We said no matter how we won, we just had to get the three points and take it to the last day – let’s make it interesting," he added.

"Now if we go to Oxford and win, we’ll just hope that the other results go our way. That’s what we’ve got to do.

"First things first, let’s get the win and then we’ll see what happens after that.

"It might be I start or that I’m on the bench. Whatever happens, I’ll do what I normally do and give my all."

Read more: All the latest sports news in Kent

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