Hanworth Villa (1) 2, Guildford City (1) 1
by Barry Underwood
The Villains from Hanworth went second in the Premier division on Saturday by defeating Guildford City whose valiant battling performance was in the end in vain. It was the home side that opened the match in confident fashion but City are now a different proposition defensively, and although they rode their luck at times they dealt well with a multitude of high balls into the box. New club captain Greg Hayden especially has risen to the challenge at the heart of the defence which was exemplified by his block on seven minutes which was of the highest order. It wasn’t all one sided though and City did look to push forward down the flanks through Alex Rose and loanee Evander Lopes. It was Rose who had the first attempt on goal having a shot deflected for a corner. It was from this corner on 12 minutes that the visitors took the lead and it came from a goalkeeping error. Lope’s corner swung into the danger area and Balvinder Khaira elected to punch the ball clear. Sadly for him he mistimed his punch and the ball dropped down over the goal-line. Lifted by their goal, City played their best football of the game over the next 20 minutes. Guildford came close to extending their lead when Tom Bingham went past a defender before smashing a fine effort against the intersection of post and crossbar. A minute later Kiye Martin’s 22 yard free-kick was saved well by Khaira scrambling across goal. Gradually though City found themselves being pushed back and conceding too many free-kicks. It was no surprise when from one such free-kick on 35 minutes the home side equalised. A deep set-piece was headed back across goal and Jermaine Queensborough was able to shoot home from close range. Hanworth now pushed forward looking to capitalise and Kallum Lunn was forced into an excellent diving save. It was important for City to get through to the interval without conceding again, but it took a quite brilliant covering tackle from Greg Haydon to prevent a further goal after a poor clearing kick.
The home side dominated possession in the second period and although City had their moments they too often lacked that all important cutting edge up front. Former City player Athan Smith-Joseph lobbed over for the home side and after confusion in the City defence Michael Vincent hit the foot of the post. It was backs to the wall stuff for a period and again Greg Hayden made an excellent block, whilst Kallum Lunn again saved well from close range. On the hour Kiye Martin’s speculative shot drifted wide and this set the scene for several half-chances for the visitors. After a fine passing move Alex Rose worked himself a shooting position eight yards from goal, but lacking confidence in his right foot he squared the ball and the chance was gone. Minutes later Darryl Siaw picked up a loose ball on the edge of the box but he dragged his effort just wide of the post. It seemed that despite the odds Guildford might come away from a difficult match with a point until disaster struck on 75 minutes. Darryl Siaw had chance to launch the ball out of defence but when closed down he opted to pass the ball back to Lunn. Substitute Ross Cheetham was alert enough to intercept the back-pass and slide the ball home for the win that takes Villa to second spot in the league.
Team: Kallum Lunn, Darryl Siaw, Alex Rose, Greg Hayden, Nemo Adams, Dan Akinwande, Evander Lopes, Robbie Mundow (David Koduah 83), Tom Bingham (Callum Wilson 71), Shawn Lyle, Kiye Martin (Alpha Cauwenbergh 63). Unused sub: Tom Booth.
Referee: Oliver Davies
Attendance – 38