Hemel Hempstead Town 3 Chelmsford City 5
After a superb, backs against the wall away point on the previous Satuday against the much fancied Welling United, the Tudors were left ruing some pretty average defending in this Bank Holiday clash in front of over 600 fans to continue a winless run that now extends to five games.
The writing was on the wall as early as the 9th minute when a ball into the box just wasn’t dealt with and Tom Wraight took advantage and fired home past Laurie walker to give City the lead. It wasn’t too long before the home side were level however when a nice move down the right ended with Joe Howe pulling the ball back to an unmarked Jordan Parkes who buried it first time, after some equally poor defending by Chelmsford. Charlie Sheringham met a Parkes free kick after 15 minutes but he couldn’t direct his header on target and it flew wide and that was about it for Hemel in the first period as City pushed forward in numbers. Walker saved well twice from Wraight and Rob Swaine should have done better with a header that went wide. There were a couple of moments for the Tudors before the break but nothing that troubled McDonald in the visitors goal.
The second half saw Hemel step up through the gears and Sanchez Watt had a shot saved before they went in front on 50 minutes when Billy Clifford fired home from the edge of the area after City had failed to clear their lines. After this the Tudors had opportunities to add to their tally when first Sheringham and then Parkes had efforts saved by McDonald and it was somewhat against the run of play when The Clarets equalised. The earned a corner just after the hour mark and it was met by a completely unmarked Anthony Church who headed into the net from close range with the Hemel defence watching. Two minutes later they went in front after a free kick was only half cleared and centre half Rob Swaine had time and space to pick his spot. City almost put the game to bed moments later when Tom Hamblin miscued a pass straight to Scott Fenwick who raced clear only to be thwarted by an excellent save by Laurie Walker.
The home side rallied again and deservedly levelled when skipper Jordan Parkes got his second of the match curling his free kick round the wall and in via the post. With both sides defending poorly it really was anyones game and it was more indecision in the Tudors back line with just five minutes left that ended up costing them the points. Rhys Murphy pounced on an error by a Tudors defender, who allowed the ball to bounce and Murphy took full advantage, drilling the ball past the hapless Walker to give his side the lead again and with just minutes left, with Hemel pushing forward Joe Howe was outpaced down the left and the ball was pulled back to Christopher Whelpdale who had the easy job of slotting the ball home to make it game over.
In the end the scoreline was a bit harsh on the home side but they only really have themselves to blame after some poor defending against a decent side who took full advantage. They certainly missed Ismail Yakubu who was missing after picking up an injury against Welling on Saturday and they will be hoping it wont be too long a lay off. With Lloyd Doyley and Darren Ward also out injured manager Dean Brennan will be hoping that at least one of them returns for the next game, an away trip to Torquay United.
1: Walker 2: Howe 3: Connolly 4: Parkes © 5: Hamblin 6: Kaloczi 7: Sheringham 8: Clifford 9: Oliyide 10: Sanchez Watt 11; Prestidge
Subs 12: Cawley (Sheringham) 14: Osborn (Clifford) 15: McCall 16: Roberts 17: Paulin.
Attendance 625 Tudors Man of the Match : Jordan Parkes