Published: 06:00, 20 December 2019
Whitstable keeper Dan Eason was the star of the show on Saturday after saving two penalties in the space of three minutes.
Boss Lloyd Blackman was full of praise for the goalie after his heroics helped Whitstable come through a tough second half against Ramsgate to earn a point from a 1-1 draw.
“He has been first class all season,” said Blackman, who has worked with Eason for many years.
“There is no question that he is a quality keeper, he’s 30 now and still a great age but one of the senior players of the squad.
“He is arguably one of the best in the league, if not the best.
“Every supporter or player you speak to says what a good player he is and that showed with the awards he won last season.”
Whitstable had taken the lead through Marcus Elliott, just nine minutes in, but Ashley Miller pulled a goal back just before the break.
Blackman commented: “At 1-1 then they have the ascendency.
“It might have been a different game had we not switched off.”
Miller was one of those to be denied from the spot, taking responsibility after their loanee from Gillingham, Roman Campbell, had seen his spot-kick saved.
“We weren’t sure what the first penalty had been given for,” Blackman said.
“Was it a push? A handball? We were all perplexed and even their guys were a bit sheepish.
“The second was a lazy tackle from Josh Spencer but when you have Dan Eason in goal you’ve got a chance.
“The second save he stood up to it, it was right down the middle, but he read it and it takes a brave keeper to stand your ground.
“I was really pleased for him.”
Spencer and the rest of the team might well have been suffering the effects of a midweek trip to Guernsey, coming back 2-0 winners.
Elliott scored both that night, with two in the last 10 minutes.
The manager said: “I can’t be too critical of the players after the week we’ve had and it was nice to walk away with a result of some kind.”
Whitstable’s players will have a well-earned break this Saturday before facing Ashford United at home on Boxing Day (kick off 1pm).
A trip to Herne Bay follows on New Year’s Day.
Looking ahead, Blackman said: “We’ve got two big games and it’s against two teams above us in the table both fighting for promotion.
“There is no pressure on us and we’ll be having a go. Once we’ve played these game we’ll be able to make a clearer assessment of where we are.”
Liam Dickson will be missing after picking up an Achilles injury in the game against Guernsey.
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More by this authorLuke Cawdell