Forest felled as Hawks set the standard in FA Trophy

James Hayter. Picture: Mick Young
James Hayter. Picture: Mick Young
Bobby Scott. Picture: Neil Marshall (171033-12)

Trio aim to make home advantage count in Vase

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The Hawks put their league woes to one side as they dumped Forest Green Rovers out of the FA Trophy with a 2-0 win at Westleigh Park.

A second-half Scott Donnelly penalty and a late strike from substitute James Hayter condemned the 10-man National League visitors to defeat.

James Hayter. Picture: Mick Young

James Hayter. Picture: Mick Young

It was no more than the Hawks deserved against their much-changed visitors after a spirited second-half performance on a difficult pitch.

Hawks manager Lee Bradbury was delighted but insists his team need to display the same attitude in their league games.

‘It was a really good performance in which we worked hard from start to finish,’ said Bradbury.

‘We gave Forest Green lots of problems which was great to see.

It was very pleasing but at the same time I am a little bit angry we have not performed like that in the league

Lee Bradbury

‘They may have made seven or eight changes to their starting line-up but they were still good players they brought in.

‘We defended well and kept a clean sheet, though Ryan Young had to pull off a terrific save to keep us in it in the second half.

‘It was very pleasing but at the same time I am a little bit angry we have not performed like that in the league.

‘I have told the players they need to do that week in, week out.

‘It is frustrating that the necessary work-rate hasn’t always been present.

‘In spells we have produced it but nowhere near consistently enough.

‘If we had applied ourselves the same way we did against Forest Green we would be at the right end of our league rather than in the bottom three.

‘Hopefully this result will give us the boost needed with some big league games coming up over the Christmas holiday period.’

With the Westleigh Park pitch quickly cutting up it wasn’t easy for either side to find any great fluency in the opening 45 minutes.

In the second half, both teams began to carve out good chances and on 63 minutes Young produced his stunning save to deny striker Brett Williams.

David Pipe crossed low and Williams looked certain to score from point-blank range.

Young, however, somehow flung himself across goal to push the ball away one-handed.

It proved a crucial save because four minutes later the hosts broke the deadlock and the visitors were reduced to 10 men.

Delano Sam-Yorke brought Donnelly down from behind in the area and the Hawks midfielder scored from the spot.

Two minutes from time Donnelly set up Hayter to seal the win with a composed 20-yard finish.

The Hawks gave a debut to defender Josh Hill, signed on loan from Boreham Wood, and he played well in the heart of the defence.

Hawks: Young, Strugnell, Molyneaux, Hill, Medway, Stock, Donnelly, Ciardini (Blanchett 90), Lewis, Swallow (Hayter 79), Paterson (Mullings 79)

Attendance: 266