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Kempston Rovers 0 Hitchin Town 1

Tuesday, July 19 2016

Hitchin played their second friendly in sub tropical conditions at Kempston. The stifling conditions meant manager Mark Burke fielded different teams in each half and 23 players were used in all. The result was a second successive victory with another clean sheet as Hitchin won 1-0.

Kempston won promotion to the Southern League last season and had beaten Hitchin in the corresponding friendly last year and they again proved difficult opponents. Indeed in the first half Hitchin had new goalkeeper Zac Barrett to thank for two excellent saves tipping goal bound shots round the post after 22 and 33 minutes. Hitchin were wasteful with their possession and rarely troubled the Kempston goalkeeper.

However the second half saw a big turnaround and Hitchin were on top throughout. The goal came after 48 minutes when Callum Donnelly did well and his cross led to an own goal. How Robbie Burns did not get a penalty when he was taken out in the penalty area remains a mystery. But Hitchin remained on the front foot and probably should have added to their lead.

The most important outcome of the game was more minutes for all the players with Brett Donnelly, Kane Smith, Robbie Burns, Will Wright, Lewis Rolfe and Mason Spence  making their first appearances.

Teams
First half: Barrett, Spence, Walster, Sam Barker, Webb, Pearson, McBride, Mulholland, Alfie Barker, Brooks, Barnes
Second half: Johnson, Smith, Payne, Lench, Hull, Wright, Coley, C Donnelly, B Donnelly, Burns, Kirkpatrick Sub: Rolfe for Wright 

Roy Izzard




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