Hawks boss questions bravery of troops in defeat

Scott Donnelly. Picture: Mick Young
Scott Donnelly. Picture: Mick Young
Hawks boss Lee Bradbury. Picture: Habibur Rahman (170972-31)

Bradbury hails his steely Hawks

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Lee Bradbury was livid after the Hawks suffered another disastrous away day.

Bradbury looked on in disbelief as his team threw away a two-goal lead at Wealdstone to lose the National League South showdown 3-2.

For the first 60 minutes the visitors had been far the better side and looked set to register only their second win away from home all season.

But once the home side pulled a goal back, the Hawks collapsed in dramatic fashion.

‘We capitulated in the final stages and conceded some poor goals,’ said Bradbury.

‘You have to expect to come away with a win from the position we were in.

‘We were not brave or strong enough in that period and our decision making was poor.

‘It was unacceptable and extremely disappointing.

‘I couldn’t believe what was happening and it is not something I want to experience again in a hurry.

‘We were very naive and allowed Wealdstone to pin us back when we should have been putting the ball into the corners and playing in their half.

‘With the players we have we should have been able to see the game out for the three points.’

An instantly forgettable first half ended goalless but the Hawks grabbed the initiative early in the second period with two goals in two minutes.

Scott Donnelly fired a terrific free-kick into the top corner before Matt Paterson played James Hayter through and the in-form striker stretched the Hawks lead with a cool finish.

Bradbury said: ‘We made the mistake of thinking it was going to be comfortable after that.

‘Once Wealdstone scored their first goal they picked it up from there.

‘We were not calm enough in possession and were punished for making mistakes.

‘It is really disappointing because in our last couple of away games I thought we have been quite bright.

‘We should have won this and our Easter Monday game at Eastbourne.

‘Instead of six points, we have come away with just one.’

The Hawks pushed in the closing minutes in a bid to rescue the game.

Donnelly saw another free-kick tipped over the bar before a couple of shouts for a penalty were ignored.

The defeat leaves the Hawks precariously placed two points above the relegation zone with five games left to play.

Three of their remaining games are against fellow relegation-battling clubs – Chelmsford City, St Albans City and Weston-super-Mare.

It promises to be a tense dogfight that will go to the wire.

And Bradbury needs his team to show the bottle necessary to come out on top.

Hawks: Young, Strugnell (Lewis, 89min), Hill, Robinson, Medway, Stock, Donnelly, Swallow, Paterson (Mullings, 72min), Hayter, Barker (Ciardini, 73min). Att: 646