Croxley Guild 0-2 Comrades

On Saturday Berkhamsted made a perfect start to the pre-season friendly campaign with Jamie Gavin coming forward from right back to open the scoring with a fierce right foot shot from outside the penalty area in just the 2nd minute. James Armstrong netted the other goal midway through the first half, finishing with a neat shot. In between those goals, new keeper Eddie Farmer from Aston Clinton pulled off a great save when the home team beat the offside trap.

In the second half, another new signing David Clark took over between the sticks but did not have much to do, as last season’s back four defended comfortably, with Guild’s only real chance being blasted over the bar. The new midfield signings acquitted themselves well with Mark Welling from Leverstock Green shining in the first half and Paolo Aquila from Pitstone & Ivinghoe looking good after the interval with Steve Hawes driving the team on.

The Comrades have a fearsome strike force and the only surprise was that they did not turn possession into more goals in the second half. Adam Mead came closest by rattling the bar with a 30 yard drive. Tony Burnett was creating chances with his strength and skill on the ball. Lawrence Bunker missed an open goal as he blasted one cross over the bar and next time, he found the target, only to be denied by a brilliant save. He also had a good shout for a penalty turned down. Speedy Aaron Usmani who has joined from Aston Clinton will no doubt prove a handful for defenders when he settles in.

It was a very useful work out for Mick Vipond’s team who now face four home friendlies as they hone their skills for the long league season. On Thursday 29th they are at home to Premier division Hadley k.o.7:45pm and follow up by playing Baldock Town/Letchworth at Broadwater on Saturday 31 st k.o.3pm and finish their friendlies against Premier division Kentish Town k.o.7:45pm on Tuesday 3rd August.

Grant Hastie

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