Hawks set standard as they show they belong

Hawks boss Lee Bradbury. Picture: Neil Marshall
Hawks boss Lee Bradbury. Picture: Neil Marshall
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Lee Bradbury has challenged the Hawks to maintain the tempo they have set in the National League.

Hawks picked up a 1-1 draw with AFC Fylde on Saturday in front of a crowd of 1,182 at Westleigh Park.

It was the second time in four days Bradbury's side had bettered a play-off team from last season without getting all the points, after sharing the spoils with Boreham Wood on Tuesday night.

Hawks maintained a ferocious pace against Dave Challinor's side, pressing high up the pitch and carving out chances for the full 90 minutes.

That saw the Coasters on the back foot in a display which has set the bar for the National League new boys.

Bradbury said: 'We want to get after teams and we want to make it hard for teams to play. We want to be physical enough but be fair at the same time.

'Set-pieces are key at this level and we're quite a big side as well. Defensively we've been strong as well.

'That's the way we play (pressing) and we're an honest group.

'I said at half-time the final ball in and around the edge of the box wasn't quite coming off for us.

'But we will do okay if we play with the same intensity and endeavour we have. I'm really pleased with that.

'It's a game we should've won against another side who were in the play-offs last season.

'We've got some good players and some good lads here. We've spoken about that and the spirit here a lot.

'At this moment I'm really happy with the group. Now we need to keep it up.'

Nicke Kabamba lit up the game with a gem of a strike to cancel out highly-touted striker Danny Rowe's first-half penalty.

Kabamba saw a first-half chance from a few yards out somehow saved by keeper Jay Lynch, before he superbly atoned for the miss.

Bradbury has no doubt what the summer arrival from Pompey can achieve this season.

He added: 'I said to him at half-time he will get his goal and he'll get his chance.

'There were chances in the game for him, and three minutes into the second half it was fantastic goal to bend it around a couple of players into the top corner.

'It was a really good finish and I was really pleased for him because he's so honest.

'Nicke's not really played at this level. He scored a lot of goals with Hampton & Richmond in the Conference South and now coming to us after not too much of an opportunity at Pompey.

'But he's off and running and hopefully that will now continue.'