Reds set challenge after Dark nets winner

Fare_footie  05/03/11  ''Nathan Kirby in action for Fareham Town against Hayling Island at Fareham'Picture: Ian Hargreaves  (110796-1)
Fare_footie 05/03/11 ''Nathan Kirby in action for Fareham Town against Hayling Island at Fareham'Picture: Ian Hargreaves (110796-1)
Hawks boss Lee Bradbury. Picture: Habibur Rahman (170972-31)

Bradbury hails his steely Hawks

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Fareham assistant manager Mickey Cripps challenged his Reds side to continue their winning formula after they came from behind to defeat Alresford Town at Cams Alders.

Second-half strikes from Nathan Kirby and substitute Sean Dark ensured Fareham remain on course for a top-six finish in the Wessex League premier division after Dan Strange had given the visitors the lead.

And with Fareham fresh from their Russell-Cotes Cup victory over Fleet Spurs on Monday night, Cripps admitted he expected more of the same from his side – starting with Laverstock & Ford on Saturday.

‘The lads did well to turn things around and it shows me what character is in the side,’ said Cripps.

‘To be fair to them, the players beat a very good side last night, so they have set their own standard and I will be expecting more of the same when we meet Laverstock at the weekend.’

From the start, Fareham set their stall out and Graham Lyndsey crashed a shot against the Alresford crossbar from distance.

Lyndsey, playing his 100th match in all competitions for the club – and with 80 goals in his account – went close again when he chased a through ball, only to lose out to Alresford keeper Chris Waller.

Wayne Boud’s long-distance free-kick into the Alresford penalty area also caused panic – as did his in-swinging corner that just needed a tap-in to give Fareham the lead they deserved.

Sadly, it was the visitors who made the breakthrough when Strange applied the finishing touch to a cut-and-thrust move that had opened up the Fareham rearguard.

As the second half got under way, Alresford went close to doubling their advantage when former Pompey youngster James Eyles slammed a shot just wide.

Back came Fareham, however, with Lyndsey setting up Boud, whose shot was somehow turned over the crossbar by Waller.

But seconds after Alresford had a goal ruled out for offside, Boud set up Kirby who powered home an equaliser from close range.

And almost before the celebrations were over, Fareham struck again when substitute Dark met a huge throw-in from Matt Jones to shoot past Waller from six yards for the winner.