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15 August 2023. 1:1 draw.
Harvey Bradbury opened his account for the season with a fine goal, but it wasn’t enough, as Hampton & Richmond Borough fought back to earn a point at Bericote Powerhouse Princes Park.
Opportunities were few and far between, as the battle remained predominantly in the middle of the park, and a battle it most certainly was. As a beautiful sunset shone over the top of the stand backing onto the car-park, the hosts were forced into making the first substitution of the evening… Jordan Wynter having to come on for the injured Sam Odaudu (26). Despite the setback, the hosts began to assert their authority on the game thereafter and were unlucky not to have edged ahead after thirty minutes. Luke Allen pulled the trigger from distance, only to see the ball deflected over the crossbar (30). The resulting corner then found Tyrell Miller-Rodney, who struck a sweet volley which flew narrowly over the bar once again (31). The Darts were purring at this point and only an excellent save by Adam Desbois prevented Brandon Barzey from opening his account, having been put through by a defence-splitting pass from Luke Coulson in the 37th minute. Barzey was in fine form this evening, and his runs with the ball were causing no end of trouble for the Hampton defence. Six minutes later saw Alan Dowson’s side finally get the reward their efforts deserved. Having earlier intercepted a poor Hampton pass and seeing his shot blocked (41), Harvey Bradbury finally got his first goal of the season. The goal itself coming from an excellent header, after the striker had gotten on the end of Tommy Block’s delightful cross into the danger area (43). The Darts’ dominance continued for large quantities of the second-half, as they searched for that important second goal. First, Bradbury could only shoot straight at Desbois (54), before Luke Allen forced the goalkeeper into an excellent save with a long-range drive (57). In the 79th minute, Bradbury left the field to be replaced by Charlie Sheringham, before Luke Allen fired narrowly wide of Adam Desbois’ upright two minutes later.
As far as the visitors were concerned, their first change in personnel arrived in the 74th minute, as Dan Wishart made way for Isaac Pitblado. That was followed by a double substitution with three minutes remaining, as Ruandh Donaldson and Alfy Whittingham replaced Rob Hall and Ben Seymour respectively.
Despite all their efforts and hard work, however, the hosts just weren’t able to find that second goal and were eventually punished by Hampton with eight minutes left on the clock. Dean Inman was the player to get the equaliser, after a set-piece caused mayhem inside the Dartford box. Despite several attempts at blocking the ball, it somehow still found the Hampton Skipper, who duly stuck it home. To add insult to injury referee, Mr Morgan Conn, sent off Brandon Barzey for a late challenge in the 89th minute, which left his teammates fighting the remainder of the game with ten men. Ironically, such was Barzey’s performance this evening, that even a red card couldn’t prevent him from collecting the Man of The Match award.
DARTFORD: Jack McIntyre, Sam Odaudu, Tommy Block, Tyrell Miller-Rodney, Baris Altintop, Luke Coulson (c), Luke Allen, Brandon Barzey, James Golding, Joash Nembhard, Harvey Bradbury.
SUBSTITUTES: Mitchell Beeney, Jordan Wynter, Maxwell Statham, Charlie Sheringham, Marvin Herschel.
HAMPTON & RICHMOND: Adam Desbois, Jordan Thomas, Dean Inman (c), Luis Fernandes, Jordan Cheadle, Rob Hall, Ben Seymour, Sam Deadfield, Dan Wishart, Shane Dunne, Mason Bloomfield.
SUBSTITUTES: Ruandh Donaldson, Alfy Whittingham, Ollie Davies, Teimouraz Vasagkasvilki, Isaac Pitblado.
Referee: Morgan Conn, Assists. Joe Burgess, Daniel Bains.
MoTM: Brandon Barzey
Report by Chris Palmer
(c) SportShotz Photography