Denham Ladies proud despite cup exit
HILLINGDON Abbots kept in the hunt for the Herts/Middlesex One crown by returning to winning ways against London French.
French were the only side to beat Abbots last season but the tables were turned here to leave the hosts just one point shy of London Welsh Amateurs and six behind leaders Kilburn Cosmos.
With the wind and rain playing a major factor in proceedings at the weekend, Abbots set about keeping ball and not kicking it.
The plan did not appear to work initially as they made one too many passes and gifted the visitors the game’s opening try, although the arrears were quickly reduced by a Hillingdon penalty.
Possession and territory swung both ways and there was a lack of discipline from Abbots which enabled the competent London French kicker to convert two long-range penalties, making it 11-3.
As half-time approached with the scoreboard looked far from ideal from an Abbots perspective, Elliot Wake managed to find winger Brett Parnham to dive over in the corner and claw back some points.
Hillingdon had the wind behind them after the interval and it immediately paid BATTLING Denham United Ladies bowed out the FA Cup to Crystal Palace at the fourth qualifying round stage.
The Eagles soared to a 2-1 victory at the Middlesex Stadium but United manager Adam Frailing walked away a proud man after watching his team push Palace all the way.
United fell behind after 15 minutes when goalkeeper Lizzie Rose brought down a Crystal Palace attacker and was unable to keep out the resulting penalty.
Eagles soon doubled the lead and it would have been easy for Frailing’s ladies to become disheartened with a cup exit looming large on the horizon.
But to their credit, Denham showed good spirit and pulled dividends as a Wake penalty was dispatched to level the score.
Excellent yards were gained by Kyle Buckingham, Neil Gordge and Adriano Martins, with the former touching down to send the home side into the lead for the first time.
And the result was put to bed when a high tackle on the try-line denied Abbots a score and the referee decided it was worthy of a penalty try, which was converted to complete the scoring at 25-11. one back when Laura Holbrook, Alissa Down and Laura Holbrook combined to release Nat Murray for a fine finish.
However, there was no way through in the second half as Palace set up an impenetrable defensive wall and held out to progress into the next stage of the competition.
There was better news to come from the reserves as Jenna Wood, Charlie-Leigh Dixon, Elishia Allen and Alana Maria Lazarus fired them to a 4-1 triumph over Camden Town.
Denham’s U15s continued their winning streak by beating Mole Valley 2-1 at the Den, recovering from falling a goal down to hit back through Katie Akerman and Julia Thurauf.
Chloe Smith was awarded player of the match for her hard work in defence.
There was a 5-2 victory for the U14s in a friendly against Surrey League opposition Hampton Youth. Shania Foley (2) Tilly Wilson, Naomi Hickey and Mia Stephenson all found the net.
And Denham’s U12s were 3-0 winners in their league clash with Islington Whites. Tara Jhawer’s double put them firmly in the driving seat and Maddie Kirkby added her name to the scoresheet at the death.
n KNOCKED OUT: Denham United Ladies