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Hitchin Town 3 Haringey Borough 0

Monday, November 16 2015

Two goals from Brett Donnelly and a super strike from Kane Smith saw The Canaries through to the 3rd Qualifying Round of the FA Trophy. Donnelly’s second goal, seven minutes before time, put the result beyond doubt as the team turned in solid performance to book a trip to Weston Super Mare.

In the absence of Dan Webb, Rolfe and Bickerstaff played in the centre of defence with Smith and Walster at full back. 

Hitchin got off to the best possible start with a goal on 4 minutes as a cross from the left by Barker bobbled in the box. Donnelly was on hand to stab home a shot on the turn.

The Canaries continued to pile on the pressure and thought they had a second goal when the ball ended in the back of the net after Burns chipped towards goal from a corner. However the assistant’s flag had been raised. 

Undeterred, Barker curled a shot just over the bar after good work by Walster and Burns. The Haringey keeper Harris got down at the last moment to collect a Donnelly effort, and was then tested by Burns who had been set up by McNamara.

Haringey had less of the ball than in the first tie but Horlock had to be alert to tip over a cross shot from Dedman. From the resulting corner, Hitchin defended resolutely to clear efforts from Djassi-Sambu and Griffiths.

Hitchin doubled their advantage on 26 minutes with a candidate for goal of the season. Kane Smith advanced with the ball and unleashed a fierce shot across the face of the goal to fly in at Harris’ far post. The keeper had no chance or even time to react to the strike.

Despite being two goals behind, Haringey pushed to get back into the game before half time. Horlock needed to come to the edge of his area to gather as Asamoah advanced onto a chipped pass from McDonald. He was also forced into a low save to keep out a shot from Djassi-Sambu – playing in “Edgar Davids type” glasses and having an impressive match in midfield – after a Fenton freekick.

Half time: Hitchin Town 2 Haringey Borough 0

The second half continued with Hitchin having the majority of possession. Barker shot wide and Donnelly headed wide, while a Burns freekick cleared the bar. McNamara played a great through ball to Kirkpatrick advancing into the right side of the penalty box but he fired into the side netting at the near post rather than across the goal face. 

Haringey had one half chance started by Djassi-Sambu, who played a pass to McDonald on the left flank. His teasing cross just evaded the onrushing midfielder. However the momentum was with Hitchin as Smith had a penalty appeal turned down, and Donnelly started and nearly finished a move but couldn’t get on the end of a ball from McNamara.

A third goal was well deserved and it arrived on 83 minutes as Donnelly this time was able to start and finish matters. He set up Kirkpatrick on the left, who jinked into the area and cut the ball back for the centre forward to finish from close range.

Both teams struck the woodwork before the final whistle. Richards for Haringey played in McDonald whose shot from distance glanced the outside of the post, while Donnelly had a header tipped onto the bar just missing out on a hat-trick!

However the victory and the £3250 prize money went to Hitchin as they kept up their good run of form in three cup competitions.

Full time: Hitchin Town 3 Haringey Borough 0
Hitchin - Horlock, Smith, Bickerstaff, Ann (Cap), Walster, Rolfe, McNamara, Kirkpatrick, Brett Donnelly, Burns, Barker
Subs – Lench (for McNamara), Johnson, Boyd (for Burns), Wright, Brooks (for Ann)
Haringey - Harris, Dedman, Fenton, Djassi-Sambu, Scott, Walker (Cap), Aristidou, Richards, Griffiths, Asamoah, McDonald
Subs – Martelli (for Dedman), Gabriel (for Asamoah), Blake (for Griffiths), Kharshiladze

Attendance 109 


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