Bradbury keen to get over final hurdle

Perry Ryan Picture: Mick Young
Perry Ryan Picture: Mick Young
Ryan Pennery netted for Moneyfields. Picture: Neil Marshall (171026-11)

Trophy dream is over for Moneys

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The Hawks can get themselves into a knockout mood tonight with Eversley & California making their first-ever visit to Westleigh Park (7.45pm).

The Hampshire Senior Cup tie has been switched from the Combined Counties division One side’s ground because of floodlight problems.

Local authorities, Hart District Council, won’t allow the Fox Lane outfit to use their lights until the middle of October.

And in an effort to attract more people through the turnstiles for the game, the home side have set a £5 entry price for all-comers.

The Hawks, who were losing finalists in the competition last season, will start as odds-on favourites to progress – and Bradbury is keen to see his team lift the trophy at the end of the current campaign.

‘Losing to Basingstoke in the final at Fratton Park last season was difficult to take,’ admitted Bradbury.

‘We were leading with a few minutes to go and then lost it in extra-time.

‘It is a good end-of-season occasion and we want to get there again.

‘Winning is a good habit to get into and we want to keep our little run going.

‘We won’t be complacent because Eversley are a hard-working team and a physically strong side.

‘It is important that we keep doing the right things because you can’t take anything for granted.

‘Every team we play will be given the same respect.

‘In previous years we have come unstuck in this competition when the attitude has been wrong.’

The Hawks suffered a surprise Hampshire Cup exit two seasons ago at Sholing when they got it horribly wrong on the night.

It wasn’t too many years before that they also suffered an embarrassing exit at Blackfield & Langley.

Bradbury, however, is likely to take the opportunity to rest some of his squad ahead of Saturday’s Conference South visit to Maidenhead United.

Players who have spent the last few games on the substitutes’ bench are likely to get a run out.

That could mean a rare start for young goalkeeper Charlie Searle, who impressed last season when drafted into the senior side.

Defenders Dan Blanchett, Pedro Monteiro and Ryan Woodford, along with forwards Harry Wedlake, Ben Swallow, Shamir Mullings and JJ Hooper, may also start.

Perry Ryan should also be back following a hamstring problem which has kept him out for a couple of weeks.

Bradbury, meanwhile, declared himself happy with the Hawks’ FA Cup draw, which will see them entertain Swindon Supermarine.

The Southern League side will visit Westleigh Park in the second qualifying round on Saturday, September 27.

‘We have to be happy with a home draw against a team playing two levels below us,’ said Bradbury.

‘It is the Cup, though, and they will come to us looking to cause an upset.

‘Although we are famous for our 2007-2008 Cup run that ended at Liverpool, in the last couple of years our track record hasn’t been great.

‘It would be good to go on a Cup run because financially it can make a big difference.’

Gosport Borough will travel to Southern League side Larkhall Athletic.

The reward for Bognor if they win their replay at Lewes is a visit to Witham Town.