Sydenhams Premier League (Saturday 5th October 2019)
Hamworthy United: O King, J Gleeson, R Watkins, H Cooper (H White 80), C Cocklin, T Rolls, A Pope (B Randall 75), L Francis (c), E Hodge, D Cann, C Beard
Unused Subs: J Filkins, C Senior
Goals: Hodge, Beard (2)
The Hammers' were hoping that their long trip to Barlows Park would be the start of a new dawn, with their new Manager Tim Sills now at the helm. He brings with him a wealth of experience having enjoyed a long playing career that has spanned several southern-based league and non-league clubs. United were also hoping to improve on a disappointing return of just two draws from their last six matches. This had seen them plummet in the league from top to twelfth position. The Hammers though could expect no favours against a team unbeaten at home for six games.
It was however the Hammers who made an early breakthrough on 4 minutes, Eddie Hodge chasing down and robbing a defender before finding the back of the net.
Tadley though gradually started to peg United back, and they restored parity on 22 minutes. Following a neat move, Captain Brett Denham laid the ball on a plate for Alex Fragata to tap in. Despite conceding the equaliser, this was a good half for United, all the team having put in a positive effort, and they were very much in the game.
Both sides had early chances after the restart. After home stopper Jack Martin had saved a one-on-one, the hosts then had a penalty appeal turned down. The Hammers though were always looking the stronger side, keeping the ball better and deservedly regained the lead in the 67th minute. Cameron Beard got to Dan Cann's cross first before poking the ball home. Ten minutes later the visitors extended their lead. Man of theMatch Cameron Beard completed his brace, after again robbing a defender before running on and slotting the ball past the goal keeper.
This was a solid performance all round by United whose attitude could not be faulted. All the players knew and did what they had to do. They controlled most of the game, and were better organised off the ball. They also made good use of the space, with Eddie Hodge a catalyst in many of the moves. Although Dan Cann these days is not at his quickest, United used him more efficiently by playing the ball to his feet, which allowed him to link well with other players.
This was a deserved winning start for their new manager that saw the Hammers leap-frog Tadley and move up the league two places to tenth. More importantly their confidence returned, and they can now hopefully give the league leaders Alresford Town a good test in the Sydenhams League Cup this Saturday.