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Team Bath 0 Hitchin Town 1

Saturday, October 15 2005

Hitchin lined up a lucrative FA Trophy local derby with Bedford by beating the students of Team Bath at a near-deserted Twerton Park. The Canaries will meet their neighbours on November 12 in  tie that will surely attract a near-1,000 gate.

Hitchin went into this game shorn of their first choice strike force of Josh Sozzo and Thomas Hayes. Manager Darren Salton opted for a formation intended to, in the cliché ridden parlance of the game, “a professional job”. The Canaries fielding a 3-6-1 formation, did just that.

The goal that won this game came after just nine minutes and was a stroke of good fortune. A badly placed pass rolled in the direction of Aaran Cavill and, spotting goalkeeper Darren Chitty yards out of his line, he lobbed the ball into the net from more than 30 yards.

Hitchin could have had another goal after 13 minutes when Daniel French shot into the side-netting.

Team Bath, despite enjoying the bulk of possession, were restricted to a series of crosses that went nowhere and a shot over the bar by Adi Adams in the first half.

At the start of the second period, however, Hitchin goalkeeper Richard Wilmot pulled off good saves from Sean Canham and Adams. Hitchin were pinned back for much of the half, but Team Bath lacked the penetration to cause too much panic in a defence well organised by Stuart Hammonds and Leon Townley.

It was not until the latter stages that Hitchin threatened the Team Bath goal again, and a snap shot by Bilal Hassan went agonisingly close to making the Canaries’ win more comfortable.  

A morale booster, then, for Salton’s men, and ample revenge for last season’s FA Trophy drubbing at the hand of the university side.

Hitchin: Wilmot, Townley, Ayres, Hammonds, Pugh, Jenner (Mills 63), Cavill (Lamacraft 80). French, Phelan (Hassan 71), Lochhead, Duffy




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