Bennett’s Just done it

Justin Bennett embraces his wife Claire after breaking Gosport Borough's all-time goalscoring record. Picture: Dave Haines
Justin Bennett embraces his wife Claire after breaking Gosport Borough's all-time goalscoring record. Picture: Dave Haines
Hawks boss Lee Bradbury

Hawks knocked off top spot

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Justin Bennett toasted his record-breaking moment for Gosport Borough and admitted: I wondered if my chance had gone.

The striker equalled Richie Coulbert’s all-time mark of 192 goals for the Privett Park outfit with a close-range finish early in the 2-1 win over Boreham Wood in Skrill South.

And he then clipped home a beauty into the far corner after being released by Jamie Brown eight minutes into the second half.

It left Junior Morias’ late header as nothing more than a consolation as Borough climbed out of the bottom three with a richly-deserved win that boosts their survival hopes.

After he was sent out on loan to Poole Town in January, the 31-year-old questioned whether he would get the chance to celebrate a fine achievement that’s been seven years in the making.

But seven goals in six games for the Dorset club restored his confidence and he has continued that hot form with four goals for Borough in two games since his return.

Bennett said: ‘Before I went on loan, I did wonder if I would ever get the chance to break the record.

‘Goals weren’t coming and I wasn’t playing particularly well. I thought “maybe it won’t happen”.

‘I found myself down the pecking order and I wasn’t sure how many chances I would actually get.

‘It’s been playing on my mind for a while so it’s great it’s done now.

‘I got nine goals at the start of the season and then I was getting goals here and there and got within four.

‘I knew it wasn’t too far off. After I got a couple against Maidenhead, I knew I would do it eventually and it was just a case of when.

‘To do it in front of the home crowd is brilliant. My dad, my wife, my niece and my sister were here to see me do it as well.

‘I scored the first one and my dad shouted “Oi. Come over here if you score the second one”.

‘Luckily, I didn’t have too far to run!’

Bennett was also quick to pay tribute to his team-mates – both past and present – and the help of Poole Town in helping him find his form.

He said: ‘I haven’t done it on my own. Over those seven seasons, I’ve played with a lot of good players here.

‘I’d like to give credit to everyone I’ve played with over that period and I owe a massive debt to Poole Town.

‘The strikers weren’t scoring here and we were being constantly reminded of that fact.

‘So I was playing with that pressure on me. Going out to Poole, meant I could just play football and enjoy it.

‘They took me on and dropped important players to play me.

‘But it made me remember how to play football.’

Borough now face Sutton United tomorrow night before Sunday’s FA Trophy final at Wembley and boss Alex Pike is keen to ensure his men stay focused on their task.

He said: ‘The players were left in no uncertain terms where the emphasis was and they responded to that.

‘It was a good win and takes us out of the bottom three.

‘Confidence looked high and so it should be. We’ve taken 10 points out of 12 but now we need to get another performance in before we start thinking about Wembley.’

GOSPORT BOROUGH: Ashmore, Molyneaux, Richardson, Pearce, Poate, Carmichael, Brown, Scott (Dunford, 69mins), Wilde (Wooden, 71mins), Sills (Igoe, 71mins), Bennett. Subs: Prior, Woodward