Hanwell Town hosted Bracknell Town in the Third Qualifying Round of the Isuzu FA Trophy on Saturday last, 7th October and your roving team were there to report on events at the Geordies' welcoming and constantly updating Powerday Stadium.
This was our first visit of the season and we found that the club have now installed a new bar, a disabled toilet and an additional seated stand. This is named the Friends of Hanwell Stand and was mainly funded by contributions from members and supporters. The club have also acquired a double decker bus, which will provide viewing from the upper deck and catering downstairs.
The two teams, who are both currently occupying mid-table positions in the Southern League Premier South Division, provided an absorbing and well contested cup tie. Bracknell Town shaded the first half and led by a single goal at half time. Hanwell fought back and equalised soon after the break. Both sides had further chances but the Robins retook the lead in the 73rd minute. The Geordies pressed unsuccessfully for an equaliser. Easily their best opportunity was a missed penalty kick in the added time at the end of the match. It was very disappointing for Hanwell Town to exit the competition in this their entry stage, particularly as they had experienced a similarly short run in this season’s FA Cup.
The teams made a cautious start and the first goalmouth action came in the 6th minute, when a run on the right by Jordan Esprit produced a corner for the visitors, which was cleared.
A dangerous cross from the right by the Robin’s Liam Tack was well taken by home keeper, George Legg.
Jordan Esprit put Bracknell Town ahead in the 13th minute. He picked up a loose ball on the left, evaded a defender, sped up the wing and cut in to beat the keeper low down.
Jordan Esprit (far left) puts Bracknell Town ahead
The Geordies hit back immediately. Herson Alves’ shot was charged down and the ball went to Jack Hutchinson, whose shot brought a fine save from keeper, Simon Grant.
Herson Alves' (10) shot is charged down
Jordan Esprit’s speed enabled him to set up Joe Grant, who cleared the home crossbar from close range.
Joe Grant had another good chance to double the Robin’s lead in the 28th minute. Jordan Esprit flew down the left and delivered a perfect cross, which was headed past the upright.
Score at half time: Hanwell Town 0 Bracknell Town 1
Bracknell keeper, Simon Grant was immediately in action, saving from Jacob Bancroft, who had made a penetrating run on the left.
At the other end, George Legg saved well at close range from Joe Grant but the flag was up for offside.
Mat Mackenzie equalised for the Geordies after 52 minutes. The ball bobbled around in the visitors’ penalty area and after appeals for handball, it fell for Mat, whose shot took a deflection as it looped high into the net.
Mat Mackenzie shoots and scores the equaliser...
... and receives the congratulations
A well worked move, involving Isaac Olorunfemi and Jack Hutchinson produced a corner for Hanwell Town. Mat got his head to the kick but his effort was just too high. Mat then took Herson Alves’ cross on his chest but volleyed wide.
Mat Mackenzie's header is too high
With an hour gone, Jordan Esprit set up Joe Grant, who fired wide.
Jack Hutchinson made a good run through the middle and finished with a low shot, which keeper Simon Grant safely held. Next, Simon bravely challenged and beat Jacob Bancroft to Jack’s through ball. Then, Jacob’s cross, following a burst up the right, didn’t find any takers.
Robins’ Kayjay Osu found himself in plenty of space to set up Ashley Lodge. Ashley’s centre was headed wide by Tom Jackson. Next, a timely tackle by Dan Carr, saved the situation for the Magpies, at the expense of a corner.
Dan came to his side’s rescue again in the 70th minute, by heading George Knight’s overhead kick out from under the crossbar.
Jordan Esprit netted what proved to be the winning goal for Bracknell, three minutes later, after Ashley Lodge had looped the ball through to him.
Jordan Esprit (9) hits the winning goal
Jacob Bancroft’s run through the middle of the Bracknell rear-guard was halted by the weight of numbers.
Hanwell substitute, Leo Sery made an immediate impact, releasing Mat Mackenzie. Mat held onto the ball just too long and his shot was blocked for a corner.
Bracknell substitute Ben Harris and Hanwell keeper, George Legg clashed going for a through ball. Both players needed attention.
The announcement that there would be 7 minutes added time was followed by a succession of Geordies’ corners. Despite some tense moments, the visitors held out. Skipper Calum Duffy came closest to equalizing, when he headed Leo Sery’s corner narrowly wide.
With less than 2 minutes remaining, Elliot Benyon burst into the Bracknell box, where he was brought down by Kayjay Osu. Unfortunately, Calum Duffy hit the resulting penalty kick over the crossbar.
Elliot Benyon is brought down...
Final Score: Hanwell Town 1 Bracknell Town 2
... but Calum Duffy's penalty clears the bar
TEAM LINE UPS:
Hanwell Town: George Legg, Dan Carr, Isaac Olorunfemi, Fabio Sole, Calum Duffy (capt), Dwayne Duncan, Jack Hutchinson (Leo Sery 82 mins), Mat Mackenzie (Callum Woodcock 84), Elliott Benyon, Herson Alves and Jacob Bancroft.
Unused substitutes: Sam Evans, Cain Wright and Charlie Mawson-Smith.
Manager: Chris Moore
Bracknell Town: Simon Grant, Elliot Legg. Liam Tack, Kayjay Osu, Darryl Harrison, Tom Jackson (Max Herbert 81), Joe Grant (Kameron English 75), George Knight, Jordan Esprit, Ashley Lodge and Nana Owusu (Ben Harris 87).
Unused Substitutes: Ethan Burden and Sean Fraser.
Managers: Jamie McClurg and Carl Withers.
Referee: Mario Stetakovic Assistant Referees: Gary Ogden and Andrew Halladay.
Two of the five Middlesex clubs playing in this round won their home matches. Hendon beat AFC Sudbury 3-1 and Harrow Borough beat Margate 1-0.
Both clubs have been drawn at home in the First Round Proper, on 28th October. Hendon play Walton & Hersham and Harrow Borough play Beaconsfield Town.
Unfortunately, our other two representatives, Enfield Town and Hayes & Yeading United lost, both away from home. Enfield Town went down 4-3 at Chesham United and Hayes & Yeading United 3-1 at Bognor Regis Town.
Report: Jim Taylor
Photos: Chris Benn
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Full set courtesy of Chris Benn