The men’s 4’s continued their impressive pre-season form by outshining Northampton Saints 3’s.
On what was a rather sodden pitch in sweltering conditions, the 4’s knew they would be up against it as they travelled with twelve players- plus a late call up for Paul Dunleavy! The first half proved to be rather frantic as both sides sought to move the ball quickly. At times Hawks, in their white away strip, looked dangerous- especially on the break. However, the first half ended goalless. There were clear-cut chances at both ends but errors from both sides meant there was no end product.
Hawks were much improved in the second half. They were less wasteful when in possession of the ball, whilst better movement off the ball provided a greater attacking threat.
Arguably, Northampton had the better of the chances, but it was Hawks who struck first. A slapped pass from the half-way line from skipper Guy Biggs found Rich Tyser, who then squared the ball to Barny Barber in the opposition D. The Saints goalkeeper then parried Barber’s effort to Rich Tyser, who had the job of simply nudging the ball over the line to make it 1-0 to Hawks.
However, a goal from the home side seemed inevitable. Northampton negotiated their way back into the game after dispatching a short corner only minutes after the deadlock was broken- at 1-1, this friendly fixture was finely poised.
The game appeared to be heading for a draw, but Hawks were not about to squander their hard work. After winning a short corner in the dying minutes, Barny Barber stepped up to fire a drag-flick above the backboard and into the left-hand side of the net to make it 2-1 to Hawks. A spirited Hawks then saw out the remaining few minutes to maintain their 100% pre-season record.
Honourable mentions must go to young Sam Hill, who impressed in his first appearance for the 4s, as well as Ben Pearce in goal, who continues to grow in confidence.