White and Cooper-Smith strike to clinch points
First half goals from Andrew White and Daryl Cooper-Smith gave the firsts a 2-1 win over CB Hounslow Utd
After a cagey start, our first chance came on seven minutes, but neat link up between Matt Tanton and Matt Auletta ended with a deep cross being knocked down by Matt Farrell, but Daryl Cooper-Smith was caught offside.
A minute later we took the lead, CB tried to play out from the back, Hussein Heidari was caught in possession and Andrew White surged clear and side-footed low beyond keeper Rhys Forster. We continued to dominate without really creating much, whilst at the other end anything from CB was well dealt with by Craig Hastings.
We went close on 16 minutes, but Asa Rixon was just unable to get on the end of a Tanton cross. CB went close on 18 minutes when a decent delivery by Gavin Bamford saw Michael Eacott clatter Jack Watts, causing uproar from the CB bench demanding a penalty, but in the end a goalkick was awarded.
It was 2-0 on 26 minutes, a long ball into the area by White was headed down by a CB defender, and Cooper-Smith thundered home the loose ball to increase the lead. A minute later and an Auletta corner from the right hand side was met by a thumping Rixon header, which cannoned off the bar and was hooked clear by the CB defence.
Matt Ferdinando bought a good save by Forster away to his left on 33 minutes, and from the loose ball, White's low shot was blocked behind for a corner.
CB's Adam Roberts was probably fortunate to only receive a yellow card for an elbow on Hastings and a minute later CB should have reduced the arrears. A probing ball by Bamford split our backline and found Sirak Beyene but he somehow dragged his effort wide, when only having Eacott to beat.
Eacott then saved superbly from a driven strike by Bamford from close range. As time ran out there were chances at both ends, White forced Gabriel Chiedozie into a mistake but we were unable to force home the corner. CB broke quickly with Beyene getting clear, and in the end only good defending by Rory Lewis prevented CB getting back into the game.
CB were back in the game 30 seconds into the second half, when a ball from Thomas Kanek was played into Watts and he guided a header beyond Eacott for 2-1 and game on.
Roberts got the better of Lewis and Aaron Bogle, and Beyene poked home the loose ball but fortunately the flag was up for offside. It should have been 3-1 on 50 minutes when a dinked ball over the backline by Farrell found Auletta but for once his touch was poor and the ball went back to Forster.
Roberts again caused problems but was well marshalled by Hastings and Tanton. Back at the other end and Auletta almost latched onto a free kick, but was thwarted by Bamford.
On the hour, a dangerous cross by Lewis was well claimed by Forster. CB should have levelled a couple of minutes later, Hastings missed a clearance, Watts burst through on goal but was denied by a great one-on-one save by Eacott.
Kanek found Watts on 62 minutes but Hastings was on hand to make a great block and force the ball behind for a corner. Beyene flicked the ball goalwards from the corner, and Bogle deflected it behind for another corner.
Hastings went into the book on 63 minutes when he missed his clearance and caught Watts on the jaw. CB replaced Beyene with Harrison Livingstone on 64 minutes. A minute later we conceded a free kick on the edge of the area, and Livingstones effort was deflected by Bogle but Eacott got down well to make the save low to his right.
Lewis almost deceived Forster with a loopy cross into the area, but Forster just back-pedalled to turn the ball over the bar.
We made our first change on 71 minutes, with Craig Nelson replacing Ferdinando. A minute later and a decent run by Cooper-Smith ended with a low cross eluding everybody, and a similar result happened the other side when Lewis played a ball into the area but just out of reach of the front line.
With fifteen minutes remaining we were caught overplaying and a quick break by Livingstone ended with Lewis making a good recovery challenge. CB made their second change on 76 minutes with Shak Morris replacing Kanek.
Tanton found his way into the book following his reaction to Morris's reaction to a foul. We should have killed the game off with five minutes to go, when Farrell, Cooper-Smith and Auletta all had chances to win seal the win, but were all denied by excellent blocks by the CB backline.
Beyene and Livingstone almost bought CB level, but after a couple of neat touches in the area, they were denied by a tremendous last ditch block by Hastings.
There was a raft of changes in the dying minutes, with Liam Holden and Ayden Richards replacing Auletta and Rixon, whilst CB replaced Roberts with Jamal Saarex.
It should have been all over in stoppage time, Holden played a neat ball to Lewis, his cross found Farrell and as the ball dropped down, Cooper-Smith somehow lashed the ball wide from six yards. It almost proved costly, but the final last gasp cross by CB was claimed under pressure by Eacott.