The Oxford City supporters were all hoping for dry conditions having endured two successive weeks of teeming rain and strong winds.
However, as the teams came out for the warm up, the rain began to fall.
An important game for both sides: Dartford lying 14th having only lost one of their six games and City in 35th place having played one more game but only winning two.
Dartford started the match seemingly the sharper and more determined of the two sides. This paid off just before the end of quarter one when City failed to clear their lines and a shot by Kanan Fitton hit the bar before rebounding to Dartford’s Cameron Brodie who hit a low well-struck shot into the bottom left-hand corner of the goal giving City keeper Hamish Hall no chance whatsoever.
By the start of quarter two the rain had eased off but the strong wind continued to swirl making it difficult for both sides to control the ball at times. With the pale sun beginning to break through the dull sky, City’s play brightened up, too, and a City attack led to Naseer El-Hosny being brought down in the box: William Jeffery calmly converted the penalty to make it one all sending Dartford’s keeper the wrong way.
The game continued to be played at a fast pace with both sides moving the ball around well. Dartford created a number of chances but their shots were well saved by Matthew Simms in the City goal, and a good move involving Naseer Al-Hosny, Tom Rolfe (who had a very good game) and Jonah Clarke saw take the lead in the third quarter when Clarke calmly slotted home from 18 yards out.
With much riding on the result for both teams, Dartford put Oxford under immense pressure for most of the remaining quarter, winning three corners in a row at one point and dropping the ball right under the bar but City refused to succumb, managing to hold on to their slim 2-1 lead to eventually triumph at the final whistle.
This means that City now progress to the knockout stage of the competition which a draw or a loss would have seen them eliminated