Hawks 2 Chelmsford 1 - Substitute Alex Wall nets first goal since October as hosts secure successive wins at Westleigh Park for first time since October

Hawks secured consecutive victories at Westleigh Park for the first time since October as they claimed a 2-1 triumph over Chelmsford City in the National League South.

Alex Wall slammed home Hawks' opener from an indirect free-kick in the area following a Chelmsford back-pass infringement Pictures: Dave Haines
Alex Wall slammed home Hawks' opener from an indirect free-kick in the area following a Chelmsford back-pass infringement Pictures: Dave Haines

Substitute Alex Wall - on as an 11th-minute replacement for Manny Duku after he suffered a nasty head injury - slammed home his first goal since October from an indirect free-kick near the penalty spot after a back-pass infringement to put the hosts on the way to victory on 52 minutes.

Fellow striker Stefan Payne was on hand to slot home a second from the spot - his second in six games for the club - after Sam Smart had been wiped out by visiting goalkeeper Jacob Marsden with 20 minutes of normal time remaining.

Tom Blackwell slotted home from close range from Charlie Sheringham's cross to hand Chelmsford on 85 minutes. But, in truth, Hawks, who have now gone three games unbeaten, could have further extended their advantage in the closing stages with Tommy Wright and substitute Jake Andrews both striking the crossbar.

Full-backs Joe Newton and Josh Passley overcame pre-match knocks to feature from the start with Tommy Wright also coming in for the injured pair of Jamie Collins and Benny Read, while Jake Andrews dropped to the bench in the three changes from the side which drew at Slough last time out.

After a scrappy start with both sides careless in possession, Matthew Rush's flicked header from Eduino Vaz's whipped cross landed on the roof of the net as Ross Worner scrambled to deal with his effort on 16 minutes.

Hawks then had penalty appeals waved away by referee Matt Norton after Sam Smart went down just inside the area after coming together with Vaz on 20 minutes. Moments later, Smart picked himself up and delivered a dangerous cross which Stefan Payne clipped over the crossbar.

It remained an open contest and Ross Worner pulled off a fine point-blank save from Charlie Sheringham - son of former Pompey striker and England Teddy - as he was left unmarked to meet Tom Blackwell's free-kick.

Chelmsford goalkeeper Jacob Marsden had a moment he will not want to look back on in the lead up to Hawks opener seven minutes after the break.

The visiting stopper slipped and was forced to pick up Tom Blackwell's back-pass in the area. Substitute Wall stepped up and thundered the ball home from near the penalty spot to hand Hawks the lead on 52 minutes.

Quick-thinking Smart then pounced on a defensive error as the hosts doubled their advantage soon after.

Eastleigh loan man Smart picked up the poor following Zak Bradshaw's poor head and Marsden wiped him out in the area. Payne's resulting spot-kick squirmed under the body of Marsden to make it 2-0 on 70 minutes.

Back came Chelmsford with Sheringham, slipped in down the channel, laying on for Blackwell to slot past Worner from close range five minutes later.

Hawks were straight back at it trying to restore their two-goal advantage and Wright was denied by the crossbar then by a fine Marsden save in quick succession.

Substitute Jake Andrews then crashed an effort against the crossbar in stoppage-time as Hawks recorded a 2-1 victory.

Hawks: Worner; Passley, McCarthy, Oastler, Newton, Whittingham, Clifford, Smart, Duku, Wright, Payne. Subs: Wall (Duku, 11), Andrews (Smart, 85), Rendell (Wall, 92), Diaby, Shroll.