Hungerford Town 0 Hemel Hempstead Town 1
Vanarama National League South 9th November 2021
Match report by Allan Mitchell
In their quest to climb the table with an excellent result at an in-form and promotion-chasing Hungerford, Hemel gained three valuable points.
It was the visitors who made the better start but really failed to trouble Luke Cairney with any real effort on goal, although Tyrique Hyde saw his effort blocked by a defender after just two minutes.
After 14 minutes, Hungerford thought they had taken the lead when Ryan Seager headed in a Curtis Angell cross.
As Seager wheeled away, the linesman’s flag cut short his celebration. Just 10 minutes later, Wanjau-Smith skipped past a defender and smashed the ball home again; as Hungerford celebrated, the assistant had his flag up.
The sort of good luck that has eluded Hemel for so long finally appears to be going with us at last.
Whilst the home side had more of the attacking play in the first half Hemel always threatened on the counter, and Craig Fasanmade saw his effort well saved by Cairney after 25 minutes.
Alfie Cerulli looked to have spun his marker on 35 minutes, but he was hauled back, earning Berry-Hargreaves a deserved yellow card.
Hungerford started the second half brightly, but this seemed to stir Hemel into some attacking life, and Gus Scott-Morris powered a volley towards goal that was deflected wide after 58 minutes.
From the resulting corner, Hyde whipped in a cross for Scott-Morris to leap and power a header past Cairney.
Hungerford pressed forward and produced attacking waves of football, searching for the equaliser.
Jake Evans and James Rusby fired efforts wide just before Wanjau-Smith saw his goal-bound shot blocked on the line. It came out to Jones, who fired a shot back in towards goal, but Nick Hayes in the Hemel goal pulled off a fantastic save.
As Hemel held firm Hungerford became increasingly frustrated, and two minutes from the end, their skipper, Rusby, was sent off for a two-footed lunge; this was after several Tudors players had found their names in the referee’s book for time-wasting.
With time running out, Seager had a free-kick that whipped just wide of the top corner, it was not going to be Hungerford’s night, and the Tudors hung on to take the spoils.
Hemel: Nick Hayes, Gus Scott-Morriss, Dan Wishart, Dominic Morgan-Griffiths, Jack Westbrook, Cole Kpekawa, Tyrique Hyde, (Aaron Simpson), Sam Mantom, Alfie Cerulli, (Chris Paul), Craig Fasanmade, Joash Nembhard
Subs not used: Freddie Hinds, Josh Castiglione, Jacques Maghoma.
Tudors man of the Match; Gus Scott-Morriss