12 January 2018. Dartford 1 – Havant & Waterlooville 0.
Dartford defeated title rivals Havant in National League South on Saturday. A second-minute goal from Tom Murphy proved decisive for Dartford. Havant enjoyed plenty of possession but only forced Darts keeper Deren Ibrahim into action once during the 90 minutes.
The hosts got off to a dream start, going ahead inside two minutes. Elliot Bradbrook's ball forward was nodded down by Pavey for Murphy, who brilliantly fired home beyond Ryan Young at the keeper's near post.
Darts survived more than four minutes of stoppage time, their excellent defensive display reflected by a fine effort at left-back from Mark Onyemah while captain Bradbrook was once again inspirational. They remain two points clear at the top of the table.
Hawks Manager Lee Bradbury will be determined to get the victory that will see the Hawks go top of the table.
“It’s a big game for us.” Said Bradbury, “Both teams have done very well and are up there for a reason being the two most consistent teams in the league at this point in time and will be fighting to keep that title. We can go there with confidence and on a very good run at the moment but we go there with the best away record which gives us the best chance possible but saying that we know we have a really tough test as their experienced, well organised side with a big team so set pieces will be key tomorrow and we need to be prepared for that and we will be.”
The game will be a case of something has to be given. The best home record faces the best away record with the best attacking record meeting the best defensive record. “I think they’ve lost just once at home all year whilst we’ve lost just once away. It’s very tight. It’s probably got 1-0 written all over it which means it’s probably going to end 4-4.” Prophetic, or famous last words.
Dartford: Ibrahim, Harris, Onyemah, Bonner, Vint, Collier, Hayes, Bradbrook, Pavey (Noble 79mins) Pugh (Mills 66mins), Murphy (Della-Verde 85mins). Subs not used: Ofori-Acheampong, Sho-Silva.
Havant: Young, Williams, Stock (Hayter 78mins), Woodford, Harris, Fogden, Prior, Tarbuck, Carter (Lewis 65mins), Robinson (Tubbs 60mins), Rose. Subs not used: Walker-Harris, Molyneaux.
Yellow cards for Ibrahim and Murphy, and Stock.
(c) SportShotz Photography