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Hanwell Town 1  Northwood 1

Tuesday 31st July 2012


James Reading
Danny McDonnell
Romaine Walker
Lee Grant
Reece Yorke
Scott Raper
John Christian
James Fraser
Garry Senior
Adamson Ajayi
Dean Worman
Brad Hewitt
Ryan Phillips (2, 63m)
James McCluskey (7, 53m)
Sam Sharples (11, 46m)
Kyle Matthews (8, 63m)
Oliver Hawkins (9, 53m)
Victor Asombang (6, 81m)

Northwood were held to a draw by their Spartan South Midlands League neighbours in an entertaining and hard-fought contest.

It has been all-change at Hanwell during the summer following their flirtation with and reprieve from relegation with former manager Ray Duffy back at the helm along with former Brook House boss Danny Vincent and ex-Woods reserve team boss Mark Adams as his back-up team. The Duffy sons have joined their dad at the club along with a couple of other former Brook House players and they have also prised the experienced striker Ricky Pither away from North Greenford to play at the lower level.

The Woods started strongly, but John Christian fired wide Romaine Walker had an effort pushed away by goalkeeper Kieran Jimmy and then Garry Senior’s low drive crept the wrong side of the post.

Hanwell’s first effort on goal came after 12 minutes as a long ball picked up Pither who steered a free header wide of the target. The home side continued to enjoy plenty of play but without threatening a goal and then the Woods began to improve again towards half-time. A quick free-kick saw Christian play Walker into the box and he drove a shot across the goal and just wide of the far post. Then a ball was whipped in by former Hanwell midfielder Dean Worman after a quick throw from Danny McDonnell but again it flashed wide of the target.

Walker floated a free-kick wide after 37 minutes but then the Woods finally got their noses in front a minute later as Adamson Ajayi cut in on a good run and his shot rebounded kindly for Senior to fire home with a shot on the turn.

Two minutes before the break Hanwell levelled as a ball was slipped through and the quick feet of Charley Baverstock allowed him break clear and fire home. Hanwell almost led at the break but a free-kick, pumped to the far post, saw Oliver Duffy head over from a good position.

While Northwood were back on top after the break, they were certainly missing their composure in front of goal. James McCluskey shot wide and then Oliver Hawkins skied one effort from close range before heading over from a James Fraser cross. McCluskey, another former Hanwell player, wasn’t far away with another strike and then Jimmy was finally forced into action to keep out a good crack from Kyle Matthews.

Walker finished a neat one-two with another wide shot and Ryan Phillips went close after driving forward from left-back but also saw his shot go wide of the post. After 84 minutes a long ball from Ajayi put Victor Asombang in on goal but Jimmy was alert to the situation and was out to just palm it away from the striker as he was about to go past him.

The game petered out in the end after a few fractious moments and both sides will have been happy with the result. Hanwell look to have a much better season ahead of them based on this performance while the Woods extended their unbeaten pre-season run to seven matches.