Havant show not acceptable as London get their Way

Havant battle with London Wayfarers. Picture: Neil Marshall
Havant battle with London Wayfarers. Picture: Neil Marshall
Matt Cox scored for Havant. Picture: Keith Woodland

Havant give leaders Exeter a big scare

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HAVANT ended the season with a disappointing 2-1 defeat at home to London Wayfarers on Saturday.

The hosts never got going and looked lethargic throughout the encounter.

Havant were edged out on the final day of the season. Picture: Neil Marshall

Havant were edged out on the final day of the season. Picture: Neil Marshall

Wayfarers scored within five minutes but Maciej Janiszewski struck back for the equaliser.

However, the visitors took a deserved 26th-minute lead and despite going close on several occasions, Havant couldn’t find a way through the Wayfarers defence.

The result did not affect Havant’s second-place finish in South League premier division one but it was a vital three points for their London opponents, who avoided the relegation play-offs by just a point.

The fact that Havant had nothing to play for may have had a psychological effect on their approach to the game, according to coach Ady Adams.

Havant take on London Wayfarers. Picture: Neil Marshall

Havant take on London Wayfarers. Picture: Neil Marshall

He said: ‘I think one or two people viewed it as a bit of a nothing game because it didn’t have an effect on our position in the league.

‘Whereas London Wayfarers came here and needed to win to guarantee them to stay up and they had a real focus on the game.

‘It had an air of a summer league game which really isn’t acceptable.

‘We need to look at what is going to get us firing on all cylinders right from the first whistle.’

Wayfarers started the stronger and were rewarded in the third minute when a ball across goal was turned in at the far post.

A fluid attack from Havant resulted in an 11th minute equaliser thanks to a sweet strike from Janiszewski.

James Speke had a glorious chance make it 2-1 but he mistimed his shot when one-on-one with the keeper, and shortly afterwards, it was Wayfarers who took the lead with a close range reverse shot.

The standard of Havant’s hockey in the second half was similar to the first half, littered with basic errors and poor passes.

Goalkeeper Ben Cowling once again pulled off a great save at point blank range in the 37th minute,

It was not through want of trying, but it just wasn’t Havant’s day.

Mike Deller-Merricks had the best chance to equalise moments before the end but his reverse-stick shot was high and wide of the goal.

However, the defeat doesn’t leave Adams too disheartened.

‘I wanted to win just so we could walk away with 17 wins and beat last season’s total,’ he said.

‘I can’t be too disappointed because at times we have been fantastic this season.

‘We’ve played the best hockey, certainly since I’ve been at the club, and it’s important we remember that when we finish the season on a bit of a low.

‘To be second in our league this season, I think is a fantastic achievement because no-one could legislate for the injuries we’ve had this season.’