Hanwell Town 2 Arlesey Town 1
Hanwell’s non-winning run came to an end in this vital basement ‘six-pointer’. Goals from Joe Chandiram and Nick Turner gave ‘the Toon’ a deserved half-time advantage but a spirited second-half display by the visitors kept the home supporters on edge until referee Ivan Gelov finally blew for full time.
The game had started promisingly for Hanwell and they went close to going ahead in the fifth minute when, following a Joe Chandiram free kick, both Peter Dean and Charlie Mitchell had close range efforts on goal blocked. A minute later Peter went close again when his long-range cross shot forced visiting ‘keeper Lewis Elsom to concede a corner. Two minutes after that the visitors should have taken the lead when Tony Williams beat the offside trap to burst clear. Just as the home faithful expected to see the net bulge Sam Bunting made an outstanding save. Three minutes later it needed Calum Duffy to make a fine block as a ball into the area had visiting forwards queuing up to score. From the ensuing corner Taylor Rhiney fired over the bar from the edge of the area.
Hanwell weathered this attacking burst from Arlesley and Alfie Cain was able to test Elsom with a long-range effort. Four minutes later, in the twenty-first, Hanwell went ahead. Charlie’s run and low cross enabled Glen Yala to set up Joe Chandiram, who hit the target. A similar move saw Hanwell threatening again but Elsom was off his line quickly to prevent Glen from profiting from Charlie’s pass. As so often this season Hanwell threatened more from set pieces than from open play. Earlier, a Charlie corner had been headed off the line, and as the half hour mark approached another in-swinger threatened danger to the visitors. It reached Glen outside the far post but his header back into the six yard box was cleared. However Hanwell recovered it and Glen received it out on the right. He jockeyed towards the bye-line from whence he delivered the ball back into the area where it found Nick Turner who headed it firmly into the goal.
There was no question that Hanwell had needed that second goal as Arlesley looked extremely dangerous when in the Hanwell third of the pitch. It took a tremendous block by Georges Ehui to deny Rhiney and a timely tackle by Olly Duffy to retain the two goal advantage at half time.
The early part of the second period saw the visitors in the ascendancy. Luke Abraham went close from distance, Georges did well to cut out a low cross under severe pressure and Rhiney fired wide after being set up by Williams. Fabzan Brown-Johnson also miscued in front of goal after Peter had lost the ball in midfield. The well-disciplined Hanwell rear-guard caught the speedy visitors off-side on a number of occasions but, on the hour, Sam was required to race off his line to clear a well-weighted through ball.
To the relief of the home support and somewhat subdued ‘Massive’ Hanwell began to operate more in their opponent’s territory as the half progressed, with Glen working particularly hard to break down the Blues’ rear-guard with a series of runs and balls into the box. However, it was Arlesley who notched the third goal of the game. A long ball down the middle found Rhiney, who made no mistake. The final fifteen minutes plus added-on time were fairly even but ‘Toon’ supporters were to suffer a fair amount of anxiety before the points were safe.
Ruddock Yala came on in midfield to replace the hardworking but tiring David Sangola and Hanwell had a good chance to sew the game up five minutes from time. Peter found Glen who, in turn, found Alfie in the area. The latter’s first shot rebounded back to him and his follow-up effort turned into a corner, which was headed off the line. Arlesley raced up the other end and Sam saved well from Elias Moses’ deflected shot. Town’s three central defenders did particularly well to restrict the Blues’ goal chances at this stage while the majority of Hanwell’s own advances were going down the left via the speedy Charlie. The four plus minutes of added-on time seemed like an age to the home supporters but eventually, time was signalled and the vital points were won.
TEAM: 1.Sam Bunting 2.Georges Ehui 3.Charlie Mitchell 4.Nick Turner 5.Calum Duffy 6.Oliver Duffy © 7.Alfie Cain 8.David Sangola (12.Ruddock Yala 81) 9.Peter Dean 10.Glen Yala 11.Joe Chandiram. Unused substitutes: 14.Gabriel Piorkowski 15.Ricky Pither 16.Chris Mills.