This was the first time Hitchin had played at Eynesbury since a friendly in 1990 when Mark Burke played. The playing surface was excellent and Mark fielded a largely experimental side with the Arsenal game to come on Wednesday. Callum Donnelly played as he was in need of game time while Connor Roberts had returned from holiday and Will Wright also played having completed his trial with Norwich. On the bench were the two sons of former Canary Stuart Brown who was there to see Alex and Luke play the second half.
It was a very watchable game and Eynesbury looked an impressive side under the management of Mark Ducket. It was a pity only a handful of supporters were present as both teams attempted to play a passing game. Eynesbury hit the bar after 10 minutes before Kieran McCaffrey, who had another good game, blasted a shot high over the bar. But Hitchin took the lead with a brilliant goal after 16 minutes. A sublime pass by Donnelly saw Elliot Bailey provide an emphatic finish.
Wright headed wide after a good Donnelly cross but Eynesbury equalised on 35 minutes with a close range finish. Martin Bennett made a good save as half time approached and it was 1-1 at the break.
Zac Decker and the Brown boys came on at half time as the formation changed. Eynesbury went ahead with an excellent strike but Hitchin hit back with Bailey twice coming close and Wright hitting the bar. Bennett produced another good save before Bailey scored from close range after a good cross by Reynaldo Carbon after 66 minutes.
Anthony Araba came on while there were some roll on roll off substitutions for Hitchin. On 90 minutes Decker shot wide before Eynesbury won the game in injury time as Hitchin failed to clear a corner.
Mark would have learnt more about the trialists as he gets close to the stage when final decisions will be made on who he will sign.
Team – Bennett, Simpson, Barnes, McCaffrey, Wright, Roberts, Carbon, C Donnelly, McDonald, Bailey, Clifton; Subs – Araba for Donnelly 73, Decker for McCaffrey 46, A Brown for McDonald 46, L Brown for Simpson 46. Also McDonald for Baines 81, Baines for Carbon 85.