HENDON 2 HARROW BOROUGH 4
Harrow produced a near perfect away performance as they banished the nightmare of the drubbing they received in this fixture last August Bank Holiday.
On first look Hendon’s infamous pitch appeared to be even more of a minefield than last year, with an extra coating of that bobbly black stuff. However, this time Borough played the conditions and opposition superbly. They were solid at the back, with Shaun Preddie and George Fenton winning everything in the air, and they were well marshalled by Mitchal Gough who swept up any pieces behind. Just as importantly, Borough were tough in midfield, hit crisp passes on a slow pitch, and the partnership of Ryan Moss and Anthony O’Connor continued to show plenty of promise. The defence were no nonsense with their clearances and were very effective with direct long passes behind a Hendon defence short of pace as they knew Moss and O’Connor had their beating.
Harrow weren’t three down after 15 minutes this time, but they were fortunate not to go behind when Gough missed his kick to leave Marvin Morgan with a clear sight of goal, but the striker shot straight at Al-Droubi from the edge of the box. Borough made the home side pay seconds later as O’Connor cut in from the left and his shot took a hefty deflection off Guri Demuria past the helpless Danny Boness.
Borough should have doubled their lead on 25 minutes. A poor back pass from Romario Jonas put O’Connor clear on the right side of the area, but the striker dragged his shot wide of the left hand post.
Borough needed another before half time to cement their dominance and their reward came through an error from ex-Harrow full back Howard Hall. A harmless looking Frank Kieta cross from the left was heading towards the arms of Boness before Hall stuck out a leg at the near post. It became three shortly after half time as a left footer from Lewis Cole on the edge of the box took a big deflection to wrong foot Boness. This led to an amusing chant of ‘3-0 and we haven’t scored’ from the Borough faithful.
At around the hour mark the referee let a couple of possible fouls go, which led to O’Connor’s late tackle on Cole Brown. He escaped with a yellow and after lengthy treatment Brown was carried off. The game then threatened to boil over as Morgan was late on Preddie, but he also escaped with a booking.
Al-Droubi produced a great save high to his left from Luke Tingey’s 35 yard strike, but was fortunate when he then dropped a cross to the feet of Taishan Griffith who hit the crossbar. Seconds later Hendon were awarded a penalty when a forward was adjudged to have been pushed while a long ball was in the air - apologies for vagueness as this reporter was still jotting down notes from the previous incident. Ricardo German calmly converted and Hendon had a sniff with 15 minutes to go.
Harrow weathered a mini storm and sealed the game in the first of five added minutes. Michael Bryan’s clever pass put George Moore clear. He was denied by Boness, but recovered superbly to slide and scoop the ball to substitute Harry Rush who rolled the ball past a defender on the line.
There was still time for Borough to concede a second for the fifth consecutive game as they fell asleep from the kick off. Ricardo German was left unmarked on the left of the area and side footed passed Al-Droubi for another consolation.
However, it didn’t take the gloss off a fantastic team performance. Harrow have shown they are a real threat going forward with 15 goals in 5 games, but have conceded 14. If they can tighten up at the back, and the signs were good today, who knows what could be achieved this season? Next up is Salisbury at Earlsmead on Saturday.
HENDON: Danny Boness, Howard Hall, Lee Chappell, Luke Tingey, Romario Jonas, Guri Demuria, Stephane Ngamvoulou (sub Gianni Crichlow, 54 mins), Laste Dombaxe, Ricardo German, Marvin Morgan (booked 62 mins; sub Tyriq Hunte, 63 mins, booked, 68 mins), Cole Brown (sub Taishan Griffith, 60 mins). Unused subs: Matty Newman, Prince Mbengui.
HARROW BOROUGH: Hafed Al-Droubi (booked 76 mins), George Moore, Ryan Haugh, Shaun Preddie, George Fenton, Mitchal Gough, Frank Keita, Bayley Brown (sub Michael Bryan, 77 mins), Ryan Moss (sub Adam Richards, 87 mins), Anthony O’Connor (booked 58 mins; sub Harry Rush, 77 mins), Lewis Cole. Unused sub: Lewis Everett.
by James Clouting