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Tonbridge Angels 0
2 Hemel Hempstead Town
Nash (48', 52')

Tudors rule over Angels

Angels will feel that here was another match that slipped through their fingers.  Having been much the better side during the first period but missing chances and finding visiting goalkeeper Danny Biness in excellent form they had nothing to show for their efforts at the break.  A poor opening 10 minutes to the second period saw Hemel Hempstead score twice. A missed Joe Turner penalty with 20 minutes still to go simply added to their frustrations. Once again these periods of indifferent form have to be elimInated, a point made by Angels Boss Steve McKimm. 

With Tommy Brewer suspended, and Alex Bentley recovered from injury he took over the holding midfield role while Joe Turner was restored to attacking midfield. 

Angels enjoyed much the better of the first period with lone striker Ade Yusuff continually causing the visitors defence problems and Hemel thankful that their goalkeeper Danny Biness was in excellent form. Top drawer saves came in the 16th, 32nd 37th and 38th minutes as Tonbridge turned the screw but they had nothing to show for it at the break. 

The closest Hemel Hempstead came was in the 15th minute when skipper Connor Essam hit the crossbar following a rare Tudors corner. 

The visitors came out for the second half presumably with words of advice ringing in their ears following an interval talk. Within six minutes of the restart they were two goals to the good and both scored by Liam Nash. The first arrived courtesy of a flick on from Tosan Popo which left the midfielder clear at the back post and the second was a wonderful free kick into the top right hand corner of Jonny Henly ‘s goal. 

Angels went basically three up front and for a while they seemed to take the initiative particularly when they were awarded a penalty in the 64th minute but Joe Turner blazed the spot kick high over the bar. Did Angels heads go down at that point ?  Only the players know that, but it did seem that it was not going to be the home side’s day.  Hemel Hempstead once they had worked out how to deal with the three pronged Tonbridge attack always looked fairly comfortable and were able to see out the remainder of the game to continue their challenge near the top of the table. 

As for Tonbridge, McKimm said afterwards the next 10 games were going to be critical as we must not be cast adrift at the bottom.  “I can’t be too critical of our overall standard of play this afternoon but we have to cut out these poor periods of play and maintain our standards throughout the game as we did at Bath City a few weeks back.”

Published Saturday 14th September 2019