Hawks stay top despite draw against Beavers
THE Hawks were held to a 0-0 draw by Hampton & Richmond Borough at Westleigh Park.
Defences came out on top as both National League South division title-chasing teams cancelled each other out.
Jordan Rose returned to Lee Bradbury’s starting line-up after missing the midweek game through illness.
The home side named newly-signed goalkeeper Ben Dudzinski, from Lowestoft Town, among their substitutes.
On a bitterly cold afternoon, Hawks keeper Ryan Young was quickly off his line to take the ball away from the on-rushing Shaun Jeffers.
Brian Stock tried to get the home side moving forward with two through balls which were cut out.
The Beavers had slightly the better of the play in the opening 15 minutes.
Neither side, however, had created any clear-cut opportunities in a tight affair.
Rose showed his strength by winning two strong tackles in midfield.
On 23 minutes the visitors threatened with a quick counter-attack down the right.
James Mulley crossed and the Hawks were forced to concede a corner which came to nothing.
On 35 minutes the injured Stock was replaced by Mike Carter.
There was little action to warm up the Westleigh Park crowd in the opening half, which ended goalless.
Matt Tubbs almost got on the end of a near-post cross from Rory Williams in the opening minutes of the second half.
The home side had a let-off when Ed Harris headed a free-kick against his own crossbar and the ball was scrambled clear.
A great burst down the left by Williams produced a pin-point cross into the area.
Seny Dieng beat away Wes Fogden’s header and Jason Prior’s fierce shot from the rebound was blocked.
A good chance fell to Mulley on the edge of the Hawks area, but he dragged his shot wide.
On 70 minutes midweek goal hero Alfie Rutherford replaced Tubbs.
The visitors were continuing to have the better of things as the game entered the final 10 minutes but neither side could find the net.