After an excellent 2-1 victory over Hadley on Thursday, Hertford Town went into this fixture full of confidence and knowing a win would go a long way towards Premier Division survival.
Two minutes before three on a very sunny Grand National day, they were off.
After his two-goal haul on Thursday, Mark Summers started as favourite, captain Tommy Wade and Enes Azemi joined him up front. Behind them it was a midfield three of Larry Asare-Bediako, Danny Charles and Kardan Campbell. The solid back five was Lewis Kidd, Andy “Steve” Pearce, Ibrahim Mehmet, Yemi Atta and Rhys Watson.
Manager Marvin Samuel once again watched from the stand and he would have been happy with what he saw in the early stages with Hertford starting the stronger, more positive side.
Despite constant calls to his players of ‘play the long ball, this pitch isn’t good enough to play on’ from the visiting manager, the home side did play some attacking football and created the first proper chance in the 10th minute. Azemi did well to get a flick on to Summers, who then played a lovely ball to Larry whose shot was deflected wide. Tommy Wade then sent a good effort over from the resulting corner.
The game settled down with the midfield struggling to keep the ball for anything like long periods. Marv made the call from the stand and things were switched to a 4-4-2 with Wade and Summers leading the attack.
Wade again went close on the half hour mark with a well-struck volley that went inches over. An injury to Yemi ‘Gonna getcha’ Atta meant there was a few extra minutes at the end of the first half and Hertford certainly made the most of the final few furlongs of the first forty five.
The new formation had allowed Asare-Bediako more space and he sent a fantastic cross into the box to find Tommy ‘New Dad’ Wade who finished calmly for a deserved lead. Cue more baby celebrations.
Half Time: Hertford Town 1 – 0 Leverstock Green
Leverstock upped their game in the second half and had a lot of the ball. Thankfully, Lewis Kidd, who has been a great addition to the squad, was controlled and dominant in his area.
Wade almost made it two when his looping header came off the bar but it was a certain fullback who should have doubled the lead.
It wasn’t long before it was two. Again it was Wade, wrong footing the keeper from close range. At this point Hertford were well in control but 6 minutes later Leverstock were back in it. Taking advantage of the high line being played by Town the visitors put through Mannion who finished simply passed Kidd.
But for Lewis Kidd, it would have been 2-2 a few minutes later. Leverstock’s Chris Cutler struck a free kick from the edge of the box that was destined for the top corner until Kidd produced as good a save as I have seen on this ground to tip it over the bar.
Summers continued his goal scoring form on the 83rd minute when he combined well with Wade to create space in the box and score neatly into the corner to wrap a very important win and another three points, well done lads, sugar lumps all round.