Hampton and Richmond 0 Hemel Hempstead Town 1
Vanarama National League South 4th December 2021
Match Report by Allan Mitchell
Hemel have a decent record at the Beveree Stadium in the 'Tudor Derby', and they came away with points once again in a tight game that they largely dominated.
The Tudor Army were out in force once again, and they gave a minutes applause in the sixth minute in memory of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes, something that was repeated across the country on Saturday.
Hampton were keen to let Hemel know that they meant business after a couple of recent poor results. There were some feisty tackles flying around, which resulted in the referee showing several yellow cards in the first period.
The game's first real chance came when Alfie Cerulli spun on the edge of the box before curling a shot goalwards, it looked to be heading for the top corner, but Alan Julian just managed to get a hand to it and push it wide.
Craig Fasanmade did well to turn his marker on the half-hour mark, but he dragged his shot wide as Hemel continued to press the Beavers in this first half.
Hampton came out in the second period obviously on the end of a half-time rocket from their management team, and they started to create some opportunities of their own. Nick Hayes made a superb double save before skipper Charlie Wassmer headed wide from the resulting corner.
With the game now more end to end, there was a last-minute block to deny Cerulli before Hayes did superbly again, coming out to intercept a through ball that had split the Hemel backline.
With the clock showing 86 minutes and the game seemingly heading for deadlock, the visitors took the lead when a lovely through ball from Sam Mantom sent Cerulli clear; he powered his shot in, Julian saved his effort well, but he couldn't prevent it heading goalwards, and Fasanmade was on hand to tap it over the line, the on-loan striker admitting afterwards it was probably going in, but he made sure as a Hampton defender chased back.
Hemel weren't really troubled after this other than a long punt down the middle that almost caught Hayes out; he recovered well enough to put it out for a corner, and shortly afterwards, the referee called a halt to proceedings, and the Tudors won their fifth successive away game on the bounce. Matching a record that goes back to the 2005/06 season.
If we can just get our home form on track, we could see Mark Jones' side threaten the play-off places. After playing at Berkhamsted in the Herts County Cup on Tuesday, we have three home games in a row, so plenty of opportunities to get that first home win.
Hemel: Hayes, Scott-Morriss, Wishart, Morgan-Griffiths, Castiglione (Simpson), Kpekawa, Carruthers, (Robins), Mantom©, Cerulli, Fasanmade, Nembhard. Subs not used: Stephens, Jones, Ajayi.
Tudors Man of the Match: Dominic Morgan-Griffiths.