Havant keep pressure on in title race

INJURY-HIT Havant battled to a vital 4-2 win against London Edwardians in South League premier division one.

Tuesday, 6th December 2016, 6:30 am
Updated Tuesday, 6th December 2016, 12:41 pm
Craig Duffy. Picture: Ian Hargreaves

This was always going to be a test for Havant.

And it was not made any easier with a string of injuries to key players.

But two goals from Adam Seccull set them on the way.

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Mike Deller-Merricks scored for Havant against London Edwardians. Picture Ian Hargreaves (161346-01)

James Speke and Mike Deller-Merricks also netted as they kept four points behind leaders Bromley & Beckenham.

The first chance of the game fell to Havant.

Craig Duffy won the ball in midfield and on entering the circle passed the ball to the far side of the goal, where Speke came sliding in but deflected the ball the wrong side of the post.

London Edwardians looked dangerous and it was clear to see why they had put together a string of good results during their first season in this league.

Mike Deller-Merricks scored for Havant against London Edwardians. Picture Ian Hargreaves (161346-01)

They won their first penalty corner in the 13th minute, but this was not stopped at the top of the circle.

Havant won their first penalty corner in the 16th minute and Seccull shot a powerful flick into the net.

The home side looked to be taking command of the contest but then suffered yet another injury as the influential Maciej Janiszewski took no further part in the game due to a twisted ankle.

Old Edwardians went close when a deflected shot from Mickey Franklin was scrambled off the line by Tomas Santiago and a defender.

The last five minutes of the half saw Old Edwardians push forward.

But Havant scored a second goal with a minute left on the clock.

From their second penalty corner Seccull stepped up and flicked the ball into the other side of the goal.

At the start of the second half an amazing double save by Tomas Santiago kept Havant in control.

The hosts capitalised when Duffy won the ball in the midfield and passed to Deller-Merricks at the right of the circle.

His centre across the goal found Speke, who came sliding in at the far post to deflect the ball into the roof of the net.

Three minutes later Havant went 4-0 up as Oliver Nail drove into the circle, then teed up Mike Deller-Merricks who guided the ball into an empty goal.

In the 55th minute Old Edwardians won their third penalty corner, which they converted after returning the ball back to the injector Franklin who deflected the ball into the goal.

Connor McLaughlan was awarded an unfortunate yellow card, reducing Havant to 10 men with seven minutes left.

Old Edwardians then hit a second goal as Franklin netted from another penalty corner in the 66th minute.

Tomek Bruml was the next to receive a yellow card but Havant held out for victory.