Rampant Rustington score 15 in resounding win over eight-man Ferring

Rampant Rustington Football Club returned to Southern Combination League Division 2 action in some style on Saturday.

Striker Stephen Kirkham netted four times, Chris Darwin hit a hat-trick, Gary Peters, Ryan Harvey and Declan Jenkins were all at the double, while Gavin Heather and Jon Beaney also struck as Blues romped to an impressive 15-0 home win over basement boys Ferring.

Stephen Kirkham netted in four times in Rustington's resounding win over Ferring. Picture by Derek Martin DM1823384

Stephen Kirkham netted in four times in Rustington's resounding win over Ferring. Picture by Derek Martin DM1823384

Struggling Ferring were only able to field eight players and Jon Tucker’s team showed them no sympathy with a resounding triumph.

Blues had not played a league match since December 23 but got their title quest back on track thanks to the thumping triumph.

The win was enough to move Rustington above Cowfold into sixth and Tucker’s side now have the best goal difference (plus-30) in the division thanks to the devastating demolition of Ferring.

In terms of the title race, Blues are seven points off leaders Alfold but have six games in hand.

Ferring always knew it was going to be a tall order with just eight players and Blues were seven goals to the good inside the opening half-hour.

Darwin, Peters and Kirkham all struck twice, while Beaney also weighed in with another.

There was still time for Jenkins to get in on the act, then Kirkham completed his hat-trick - which took just 32 minutes - as Tucker’s team were 9-0 ahead at the interval. Rustington were not finished there and netted another six times after the interval.

Dejected Ferring manager Dave Mugridge does not want his team to dwell on the defeat.

He said: "It was embarrassing. We only had eight players to start with, at least five pulled out.

"We need to write this game off, in my eyes it didn't happen. We'll carry on fighting for the first win."

Blues travel to Roffey for a League Cup second-round clash on Saturday, while Ferring host Montpelier Villa on the same day.