Hawks boss points to consistency and experience

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Baffins Milton Rovers found it tough against Portland. Picture: Ian Hargreaves

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Lee Bradbury is refusing to get too excited ahead of the Hawks’ Vanarama Conference South visit to Maidenhead United tomorrow (3pm).

Three successive league wins have lifted the Westleigh Park outfit to fourth in the table – just four points behind leaders Boreham Wood.

After a difficult start to the season, which saw the Hawks lose their opening three games, Bradbury’s side have started to find some consistency.

The arrival of experienced pair Brian Stock and Alan Connell have been a key factor in that.

They have acted as catalysts for the other players to raise their game.

Bradbury is far too experienced to get carried away, however, and is expecting another tough test from the Magpies.

‘We are in good form at the moment but remain aware of how quickly things can change in this league,’ said the boss.

‘In two-and-a-half weeks we have gone from the bottom of the league, up into the play-off places.

‘It is vital we continue to concentrate on producing high-quality performances.

‘I feel we have done that better in recent weeks.

‘We have been much more consistent and hard to beat.

‘At the same time we have offered a greater threat going forward.’

Bradbury has been able to field an unchanged starting line-up in the past three league games and that has made a big difference.

Greater experience has proved the key.

Brian Dutton has been drafted in alongside Ed Harris in the heart of the defence.

With newly-arrived Stock sitting in front of them, they offer a formidale obstacle to opposition attacks.

On the Hawks’ left-flank, Warren Cummings has brought all his experience to bear and is enjoying a new lease of life.

And up front Bradley Bubb is regaining his goalscoring touch.

A lot of that is down to the excellent support provided by other new-boy Connell and Scott Donnelly.

Bradbury also has the luxury of knowing he can bring players on later in the game who can make a real impact.

Young guns Shamir Mullings and JJ Hooper look hungry to prove themselves.

They both possess the pace to worry opposition defenders.

On the wing there is also Ben Swallow, who loves nothing more than to attack defenders.

‘We now have experienced players out there with a lot of know-how,’ said Bradbury.

‘They have the ability to take control.

‘In the last few games we have moved the ball well and created a lot of chances.

‘At the same time we are very keen on keeping clean sheets because they win you things.

‘We have got back to that which is really important for laying the foundations.

‘Our regained resilience will be tested to the full by Maidenhead.’

Bradbury is unlikely to stray far from his now normal starting line-up for the trip to York Road.

Instead, he is expected to name a fourth successive unchanged team.

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