Ware 0 Hanwell Town 1
By Clive Cooke
Match report by Malcolm Pierce
This second victory in three days ensured Hanwell’s position in Division One without depending on results elsewhere. Town began the game well but despite a lot of early possession did not trouble Tom Coulton in the home goal. As in mid-week David Manu was looking lively but once again he was on the receiving end of some robust treatment.
Ware gradually came into the game and necessitated Martin coming out to catch or punch several high balls into the area. They also had a ‘more-than-useful’ number nine in Kieran Bishop who netted when clearly offside approaching the twenty minute mark. A couple of minutes later he crashed the ball against the bar from the edge of the area and then fired into the side netting from an angle.
Up the other end early substitute Tyler almost found David with a low cross but it was hacked away for a corner. The Blues were beginning to assert themselves however, and that man Bishop once again struck the crossbar. In the middle of the park Hanwell’s five-strong midfield were necessarily resolute in their harrying and challenging the opposition, none more so than Tom Inch.
Sam Hurrell went close when a lobbed cross bounced off the top of the bar while up the other end Joe Chandiram did well to prevent Justin Leavers from getting a shot on goal. The closest Town came to scoring before the half-time whistle came when Calum’s long-range drive was kept out by a full-length dive from Coulton.
At half time news filtered through that Leighton had taken the lead at Chalfont in the forty-fifth minute. At that point Hanwell were in the bottom two and the mid-game cups of tea were not enjoyed by the travelling ‘Geordies’.
The second half began with another free kick for a foul on David. Michael struck it well but too high. Ware responded with a clever training ground free kick but Captain Tom came to the rescue to head clear. Tyler took Town’s next set piece and his low free kick beat everyone but was beaten away by the unsighted Coulton and the upright, after which the latter received lengthy treatment before being replaced.
Ten minutes later, in the sixty-fifth minute, Hanwell took the lead. Calum’s long throw was headed on by Connor and volleyed into the net from close range by Tom Inch to the acclaim of the visiting supporters. This spurred the home side on and both Tom Inch and Olly were called upon to execute a number of defensive headers and tackles in quick succession.
The travelling Hanwell faithful were dotted around Wodson Park but their enthusiastic support echoed around the ground as they urged their team on. News that Chalfont had established a two goal lead over Leighton inspired an even greater volume from them.
With Tom Duffy in commanding form and Martin looking increasingly confident in coming for crosses it came as a surprise when George Essuman was first to a corner in the eighty-fifth minute but he headed wide. In the last minute of normal time Town went close to increasing their lead when a clever free kick from Tyler to Sam saw the latter beat a man and send a low cross into the six-yard box that was scrambled clear.
After five minutes of added-on time the final whistle went and Town were safe. Handshakes, hugs and raucous cheering followed and the Geordie Boys’ went back to Reynolds Field a happy band.