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02 Sept 2006 SLP Hemel Hempstead Town 0-0 Halesowen Town PDF Print E-mail

Southern League Premier Division – Saturday, 2nd September 2006

Hemel Hempstead Town 0 Halesowen Town 0

Halesowen Town's unbeaten away record continued with a hard fought point at Hemel Hempstead, as Dave Haywood made his 100th appearance for the club.


With the Yeltz having won their opening 2 away games, and Hemel winning their opening 2 home games, both teams were desperate to keep these records intact, but had to settle for a point each, in a match played in blustery conditions.
Hemel made the better start, with Anthony Thomas shooting over and Jamie Kearn's effort was saved by Mark Gayle. Both sides found it increasingly difficult to create decent chances early on, as caution overcame attacking instincts. But it was Hemel who created the first decent chance of the game on 25 minutes as Gary Sippetts’ pass split the Yeltz defence. Thomas latched onto it and found himself one on one with Gayle, but shot wastefully wide. Seven minutes later, Halesowen's defence left Steve Sinclair unmarked from Chris Herron's cross, but he nodded it wide. Despite being under pressure, Halesowen did create a great chance to take the lead before half time. A great pass by Alex Cowley released Matt Lewis, but having turned Paul Aldridge, he saw his effort well saved by Steve Smith.

With both sides cancelling each other out in the first half, it was Hemel's red army that decided to take the game to the Yeltz and they should have taken the lead in the 49th minute. Gary Knight’s attempted clearance was blocked by Sippetts, who then raced clean through on goal but he was caught in two minds about what to do with the shot and eventually whacked the ball over the bar. Halesowen though, responded and a minute later Simon Forsdick weaved his way into the area, only to see his shot deflected into the keeper’s hands. Hemel then went on a quick break and Herron found Thomas, only for his shot to be gathered by Gayle. With Hemel starting to sit back again, the Yeltz had two excellent chances to claim the victory on the hour mark. First Cowley found himself clean through, and seeing Smith off his line, his attempted chip was well saved by the keeper. A minute later Lewis saw his effort beat Smith, but trickle agonisingly wide. Halesowen had to be aware of the counter attack Hemel posed and at the other end, Herron saw an effort beaten out by Gayle.

With both teams trying desperately hard to get a winner, the final ball let both teams down, with neither team seeming to make allowances for the wind. Near the end, Gayle had to be alert twice. First he saved Abdul Yoki's angled drive, then saved an effort from Thomas with his legs. The draw means Halesowen remain level on points with Hemel, only behind them on goal difference.

Hemel Hempstead Town: Steve Smith; Steve Sinclair (Abdul Yoki), Shaun Byrne, Paul Aldridge, Rob Gould, Chris Herron (Charlie Mapes), Leon Hibbert, Jamie Kearns, Gary Sippetts, Anthony Thomas, Paul Edgworth. Unused Subs: Kevin Chakaodza, Dave Fotheringham, Danny Mead.

Halesowen Town: Mark Gayle; Stuart Pierpoint, Dave Haywood, Niki Preston, Gary Knight, Grant Beckett (Nick Amos), Alex Cowley, Matt Lewis, Paul Szewczyk (Sean Dowdall), Lee Williams (Ian Cooper), Simon Forsdick. Unused Subs: Nick Smith, Danny Woodhall.

Referee: K. Haines

Attendance: 204

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