Match Preview: Isthmian League South Central Division
Hanwell Town vs Basingstoke Town
When: Saturday 11th December 2021 Kick-off 3pm
Where: Powerday Stadium, Perivale Lane, Greenford, Middlesex. UB6 8TL
Hanwell Town (Nickname – London Geordies), Average 2021-22 Home Attendance 239
Admission Prices: Adults £8, Concessions £5 Kids £1
Following our home loss against Marlow last Saturday, we travel back into North-West London for our final match this year, as we play our return fixture with Hanwell Town.
In what was a very competitive match back in late August at Winklebury, we were 2-1 victors, with a neat finish by Conor Lynch, and an exquisite finish from an acute angle by Lloyd Snell.
The Geordies jointly managed by Wayne Carter & Chris Moore, who previously managed Egham Town, before both leaving to join Hanwell in the 2017-18 season.
Hanwell have a similar record to Basingstoke with two draws and 3 losses (one of them against us), and currently sit in seventh place, having played two games less than us, with a record of PLD 13 Won 8 Drawn 2 Lost 3 GF 33 GA 18 Pts 26.
One of just a few teams to take a point off Bracknell, their loss to us, two weeks later was one of our tougher home games, and on that day, Hanwell showed that they could attack through a number of option. In that game their goal was scored by attacking midfielder Harry Rush, whilst the forward line was led by Tomasz Siemienczuk.
Their other two losses were both against playoff contenders, on the road to Uxbridge 1-0 in September and three weeks ago in a 0-1 home loss to Chertsey Town.
They average over 2 1/2 goals a game (including a 6-5 win against Staines Town, 5-1 at home to Sutton Common Rovers), and host us following an impressive 3-0 home win against Bedfont Sports last Saturday. Their midweek game at Staines Town was one of the three games called off due to the weather.
With 33 league goals, these have come from a number of players who were not present when we first played them. Leading the way is Ogo Obi with 16 goals, 12 of those in the league including back-to-back hat-tricks. He played for Hayes & Yeading before re-joining Hanwell last season. He has since been joined by ex-Chipstead forward Tom Collins, who has scored three league goals in just four appearances. This gives Collins 14 league goals on the season which leads the league.
In midfield and the goal-scorer in our first meeting is Harry Rush who seven goals, 3 in the league, he joined the club from Harrow Borough, but spent a season at Kings Langley in 2020. They also have experienced midfielder Toch Singh who is one of the first on the teamsheet. Singh, has previously played for a number of Essex-based clubs.
In defence and a player we will need to mark at corners is central defender Dwayne Duncan, who has four goals, three in the league, and previously scored 15 goals in one season for Harpenden before joining the Geordies. He will be supported by tall and commanding defender Andy O’Brien and strong defender Joel Jacobs who previously played under his current managers at Egham Town. It is reported he is a dead-ball specialist.
In goal is Hugo Sobte, who is another commanding keeper, who has a mass of experience at academies such as Reading, QPR, Crystal Palace as well as Chelsea where he played for 3 seasons along with England Stars Mason Mount and Declan Rice.
Your Basingstoke Town Side
Well our run of wins was halted by a rather crude and professional Marlow side last week at Winklebury. The only goal of the game an unlucky ricochet of defender Nathan Smart, did not truly represent the game as Marlow missed a number of second-half chances to widen the score-line. Having said that, the shambolic behaviour of goalkeeper and team-captain Simon Grant, left a nasty atmosphere around the ground at the end of the game. Talk of him getting striker Bradley Wilson sent off, and his clear time-wasting, plus continuous charges upfield to get in the face of the referee will not be forgotten by the home crowd.
But let’s be clear we were far from impressive on the day, our passing at times was sloppy, and general control of the ball was poor. Putting only two attempts on goal the whole game, via a Ben Cook shot & Bradley Wilson header, is simply not good enough for a team that still sits second in the league. This leaves us with a league record of PLD 15 Won 10 Drawn 2 Lost 3 GF 30 GA 21 PTS 32
With the non-appearance of Stefan Brown, it was good to see Conor Lynch playing the full game, and with a week to rest and improve his fitness, he must surely start tomorrow afternoon. With Bradley Wilson sidelined for his red card, it will be interesting to see if Brown is in the line-up, on the bench or unavailable again.
With Wilson’s suspension, this puts more emphasis on wingers George Reid & McKoy Palmer, to play a bigger part in the starting line-up.
In midfield more options but Simon Dunn will wear the captains armband, and the improving Anton Rodgers, will continue his role in front of the back four. Ben Cook and D’Andre Brown will be in the reckoning to start and again how we set-up will determine that. Lloyd Snell, is a good player to start on the bench and makes a good change-up if required.
With the confirmation that Daryl Wollers will miss the trip to Hanwell, this means Rob Sheridan and Nathan Smart could be the central defensive pairing. Again more options and decisions at the back positions as any two of three from Dan Williamson, James Haworth & Aiden Lewis.
Paul Strudley yet again proves why he is the No.1 keeper, with yet another excellent penalty-save, and made a number of other saves in the last 15 minutes to keep the score at just one.
So we head back up the M3 with the knowledge that this is our last game for 16 days, which means that we can go all-out to secure what is needed, three vital points to keep us in the top three and send the Stoke faithful back home to enjoy the Christmas run-up.
It is expected a number of fans will travel as usual and will give Dan and the team all the support they need, but it is also time the players take control of the game early on and take the chances that come their way.