Challenge for Hawks is to stay in driving seat

LEE BRADBURY wants the Hawks to maintain the pressure on their Ryman League premier division title rivals as they visit lowly Harrow Borough tonight (7.45pm).

Tuesday, 14th March 2017, 6:30 am
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 10:51 am

The Westleigh Park side went top in style on Saturday with a 6-0 home win over AFC Sudbury.

They hold a one-point lead over Bognor who go to Burgess Hill tonight.

Hawks boss Bradbury knows a 12th away win of the season will turn up the heat on the chasing pack.

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After losing at Leiston on the opening day of the season, they have suffered only one other defeat on the road, at Merstham.

‘We have got to where we want to be and the challenge now is to stay there,’ said Bradbury.

‘It is nice to be at the top but it is where we are in 10 games that matters.

‘Being top of the league will bring extra pressures because we are now there to be shot at.

‘I am confident this squad of players can deal with that.

‘Hard work has got us here and it is vital we keep it going.

‘Harrow are an up-and-down team who are capable of being dangerous.

‘They have beaten some of the teams who are right up there with us.

‘It is important we go there and focus on our performance.

‘How we approach the game is important.

‘We must look to recreate the energy and quality from our last game.’

Recently signed defender Jordan Rose is unlikely to be fit.

He was due to make his home debut against Sudbury but suffered hamstring problems in the warm up.

It meant a late change for Bradbury but the boss was able to deal with the situation.

Replacement Andreas Robinson came in and did an excellent job.

Bradbury added: ‘Andreas hadn’t played for a while but slotted straight back in with a very strong performance.’

Dan Strugnell is getting closer to a return after injury but may have a job forcing his way back into the team.

Bradley Tarbuck, who scored his first senior hat-trick in the last game, has been in terrific form.

Bradbury is pleased with the options he has available in his squad and particularly encouraged by the recent performances of Wes Fogden.

The midfielder has shown he is getting back to his best after injury and has a big part to play in the title push.

‘Wes was fantastic for us against Sudbury,’ added Bradbury.

‘He put in a great energetic performance and proved a real handful, his busy performance saw him get around the park and he won a lot of balls back.

‘Wes also showed at Enfield that he is capable of scoring some great goals.

‘If we can keep him fit he will have a big influence on the rest of the season.’

Hawks: Young, Woodford, Robinson, Harris, Williams, Stock, Lewis, Fogden, Tarbuck, Rutherford, Prior, Molyneaux, Carter, Paterson, Hayter, Barker, Swallow