Hendon fail to unlock the Gate
PUBLISHED: 15:54 04 March 2013 | UPDATED: 15:54 04 March 2013
Ryman League Premier Division:
Hendon 0 Margate 0
Defences dominated at Vale Farm on Saturday as Hendon and Margate fought out a scoreless draw that never really hit top gear.
The Greens were forced to introduce their new signing, former Barnet defender Warren Goodhind after just 15 minutes when Elliott Brathwaite went down, having hyper-extended his knee as he cleared the ball.
Goodhind was given little time to settle as Margate went on the attack, with Tom Murphy arrowing a shot towards the top corner that Berkley Laurencin stretched to tip over.
At the other end, a Hendon attack shorn of Junior Morias – who was recalled by Wycombe Wanderers after an extremely productive loan spell – struggled to create many openings.
It wasn’t until the 41st minute that Hendon mustered a shot on goal and even then Belal Aite-Ouakrim, who was playing a deeper role than usual, was closer to the corner flag than Craig Holloway’s goal.
However, the best chance of the game fell to Lee Angol just three minutes later as he evaded the Gate defence and Holloway, only for the ball to strike a divot and bobble off his shin as he attempted to finish from an angle.
Hendon also went close at the start of the second period as Dean Cracknell’s perfectly-weighted pass picked out Dagenham & Redbridge loanee Jack Connors, whose attempt flashed wide of the post.
The visitors soon regained the initiative, but found Hendon central defenders James Fisher and Sam Flegg in excellent form and were restricted to long-range efforts.
A 25-yard punt from Dan Stubbs was easily gathered by Laurencin, who had to exter himself far more when Ryan Dolby hit a swerving drive 11 minutes from time, but he leapt and twisted expertly to deflect the ball over the crossbar.
And there was a let-off for the Greens five minutes later when a powerful header from Joe Vines beat Laurencin, but the ball clipped the top of the bar and bounced out for a goal kick.
Hendon: Laurencin, Hall, Cousins, Flegg, Brathwaite (Goodhind 17), Fisher, Cracknell, Connors (Sonner 68), Rankin, Aite-Ouakrim (Bennett 86), Angol.