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Chatham Town head to Isthmian Premier play-off rivals Hastings United on Saturday after beating Ashford United in the Velocity Cup semi-final on Tuesday

Chatham Town reached one cup final this week and attempt to make another next - but their focus returns to the league on Saturday.

Boss Kevin Hake saluted his special group after beating Ashford United 4-2 on Tuesday night in the semi-final of the Velocity Cup.

Chatham beat Ashford in the semi-final of the Velocity Cup on Tuesday night Picture: Ian Scammell
Chatham beat Ashford in the semi-final of the Velocity Cup on Tuesday night Picture: Ian Scammell

They head to Stonebridge Road this coming Tuesday night to play Ebbsfleet United for a place in the final of the Kent Senior Cup.

A trip to Hastings United awaits Hake’s men this Saturday as they look to strengthen their grip on an Isthmian Premier Division play-off spot.

Hake said: “It’s a busy time for us at the club at the moment with two semi-finals and a tough league game against a play-off rival all in a week.

“We managed to reach another final after beating Ashford and that means we go one further than last year (after losing on penalties to Aveley in the semi-finals).

“We have good strength in depth at the club and the players that came in did well.

“This group are a special one and they keep rising to new levels so full credit must go to them.

“It’s great to be still fighting on three fronts this late in the season and we can look forward to a final next month although our thoughts need to be put aside as we now must focus on Hastings away on Saturday and then turn our attention to Ebbsfleet away on Tuesday.”

Chats will play Hashtag United in the final of the Velocity Cup final on Wednesday, April 17 at Aveley.

Hake’s Isthmian Premier Division side had been taken to penalties by Ashford in the last two cup meetings between the sides and so weren’t underestimating their South East Division opponents.

Jamie Yila’s opener for Chatham on Tuesday was quickly cancelled out by the Nuts & Bolts at the Bauvill Stadium in front of a crowd of just over 700 for the midweek clash.

That’s the way it stayed until Eze Ebozoeme – who was one of seven changes to the XI from the weekend – made it 2-1 on 70 minutes. Yila added a second on 77 and Simon Cooper made it safe late on.

Ashford got a goal back in stoppage-time as the game finished 4-2.

Hake’s men picked up maximum points last Saturday with a 2-1 home win over lowly Concord Rangers.

They were made to work hard for the points and it was nothing less than the manager expected.

Hake said: “We faced a team fighting for their lives in the final stages of the season and it was a tough game.

“We knew they were going to set up a certain way but I thought we coped with it well.

“Sometimes it’s not pretty on the eye, as it’s possession for possession sake type of game, as we look to work an opening.

“We are used to playing against this style now and often you find the last 20 minutes of these games give a true reflection of the game as the opposition tire.”

Kareem Isiaka had put Chats ahead with 32 minutes gone but Rangers levelled shortly after the hour. A goal soon after from Chris Dickson put Hake’s side back in front and that’s how it finished.

Hake said: “We chalked another win off and others around us dropped points so it was a good weekend all round.”

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