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Tonbridge 1 v Hemel 1

Match report by Allan Mitchell, Photo by Daniel Pitt

Tonbridge Angels 1 v Hemel Hempstead Town 1

(Turner - 53 min) (Castiglione - 61 min)

It was honours even in this middle of the table clash and a result that all but ended either sides fading playoff place ambitions.

The Tudors bossed the first period and knocked the ball around with ease and Tonbridge would have been relieved to have gone in at the break still level. Hemel could have been two goals up after fifteen minutes, in the 10th minute Charlee Hughes found himself in a lot of space on the edge of the six yard box where he rose to meet a Montel McKenzie cross but his header lacked any real power and Jonny Henly saved down to his right.

On 15 minutes the lively McKenzie received the ball down the right and raced forward before cutting inside and drilling a shot past Henly only to see it hit the inside of the post and bounce away. Kory Roberts got himself onto the end of a corner but he couldn’t direct his header on target and then Josh Castiglione fired just wide after a good run as Hemel continued to dominate the game.

HT 0-0

The Tudors had a great chance to take the lead at the start of the second half when McKenzie once again drove into the penalty area before firing in a shot that Henly could only parry into the path of Hughes, it looked odds on that the Hemel striker would tuck the ball home but the Tonbridge keeper somehow managed to get himself across the goal to block his effort.

Then, in the 53rd minute and somewhat against the run of play The Angels took the lead, Joe Turner found himself in some space out on the left and he was given far too much time and room to look up before curling a superb shot past Craig King. It didn’t take Hemel long to grab an equaliser though and it was Josh Castiglione who tucked the ball home from the edge of the six yard box after Reece Grant had managed to wriggle past a couple of defenders to set him up.

The home side then enjoyed a good period of pressure and it looked as though they might be the side who would go onto win the game. Hemel defended well and restricted Tonbridge to a few half chances despite their dominance at this stage but the excellent Joe Turner almost won the game when was sent clear down the middle, he fired in a shot that beat King but crashed off the woodwork and away.

Tonbridge had a great chance to win the game in the 87th minute when Turner received the ball in front of goal, just six yards out, he drilled his shot in but Craig King saved superbly, Tommy Wood was on hand as the ball ran loose and he looked odds on to score but King reacted brilliantly, saving again from point blank range to keep the scores level.

Tudors boss Brad Quinton decided to go for broke putting three players up front and Hemel pressured Jonny Henly’s goal as the minutes ticked down. They had a corner with almost the last kick of the game and King raced upfield and met it at the back post and those memories of Kings Lynn were raised but he couldn’t get his header on target and it drifted just wide.

Hemel: King; McKenzie, J.Williams, Westbrook (Mukendi) Roberts, O’Connor-Ajayi; Brown (Grant) G.Williams, Morgan-Griffiths, Castiglione (Holness); Hughes. Subs not used: Bright, Smith.

Tudors Man of the Match: Craig King

Attendance: 1312


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