Bradbury warns Hawks

Nic Ciardini in action against Sutton United last Saturday Picture: Allan Hutchings
Nic Ciardini in action against Sutton United last Saturday Picture: Allan Hutchings
Andreas Robinson. Picture: Habibur Rahman

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Lee Bradbury will read the riot act to his players before their Vanarama Conference South top-of-the-table clash at Bromley tomorrow (3pm).

The Hawks have had four players sent off in their past three games and Bradbury insists that trend has to stop.

In the 1-0 midweek home defeat by Concord Rangers Bradbury’s team finished with nine men, as Nic Ciardini and Josh Huggins both saw red.

It was Ciardini’s second successive sending off and he will be out to avoid an unwanted hat-trick when the third-placed side travel to Kent.

Bradbury insists he won’t let disciplinery problems derail his side’s play-off ambitions.

‘I will be speaking to the players and letting them know the sending offs have to stop and have to stop now,’ said the Hawks boss.

‘We are not a dirty team and all the dismissals have been for silly things.

‘I feel we have been on the wrong end of some poor decisions but the players have to stop putting themselves in those positions.

‘It will be tricky at Bromley because we need to tread a fine line.

‘We have to remain competitive but can’t afford to get into any more trouble.

‘It is vital that we keep all our players on the pitch.’

Bradbury has been boosted by the news that his appeal against Dan Strugnell’s dismissal against Hayes & Yeading has been successful and the youngster will escape a ban.

The possible return from injury of central-defender Brian Dutton will also cheer the Hawks up ahead of the big game.

Dutton and regular partner Ed Harris have been missed, particularly against Concord, who scored their winning goal after just 45 seconds.

‘If we had those two playing then it is unlikely Concord will have scored that goal,’ said Bradbury.

Harris is still out with a broken toe but having the experience of Dutton back will make a big difference.

Second-placed Bromley will present a stern test, both physically and mentally, to the Hawks who need to bounce back from defeat.

The Kent side are in line to complete a league double over their visitors, after winning 3-1 at Westleigh Park on the opening day of the season.

Bradbury added: ‘Bromley scored three cracking goals and have been consistent ever since.

‘They are not where they are for no reason and have brought some good players into their team.

‘They like to play football, though, and they generally have a good playing surface to do it on.

‘Under the circumstances it is a good place for us to be going after losing to Concord.

‘All the pressure will be on Bromley who are above us in the league. If we can come away with a point it will be good – but a win would be even better.’

Hawks: Young, Huggins, Dutton, Strugnell, Cummings, Blanchett, Stock, Donnelly, Ryan, Swallow, Ciardini, Hooper, Wright, Bubb, Mullings, Connell, Monteiro