Haringey Borough 3 Whitehawk 0
Bostik Premier League: Game 22
Yannis Ambroisine, re-signed on loan from Welling United, went straight into the Hawks side, with Rhyle Ovenden making his full debut in the centre of midfield. Ky Marsh-Brown was injured in the warm-up and his place went to Connor Tighe, who pulled on his shirt just as the players were doing the traditional pre-match hand shake.
Borough’s run of 10 wins had ended with a 2-2 draw against Merstham in their final game of 2018, but normal service was resumed with a 4-0 win at Wingate & Finchley on New Year’s Day and they provided a stiff test for the Hawks.
Giant left winger Joel Nouble, who scored a hat-trick in the first ever meeting between the two clubs in September, was a serious menace straight from the kick off but the opening goal for the home side came down the right, when the unmarked Anthony Mcdonald was picked out by a cut back from Rakim Richards, to finish comfortably on 13 minutes.
The hosts didn’t have it all their own way, with Lucas Rodrigues and Connor Tighe both making progress down the flanks and Rhyle Ovenden using the ball well in midfield. However, it was Borough who increased their lead 8 minutes before half time. Nouble retained possession on the left wing and when the ball was played into the six-yard box, it finally broke kindly for Ralston Gabriel to slot home, with Melvin Minter racing over to the assistant referee to appeal in vain for an offside flag. In the last minute of the half Minter spectacularly tipped a free-kick from Mcdonald over the bar.
The Hawks came out on the front foot in the second half and had an equal share of possession without creating any clear-cut chances. Out of the blue Borough substitute Karl Akinwande scored the goal of the game with a superb shot from 25 yards into the top corner on 67 minutes, to put the result beyond doubt.
Hawks continued to press, with Rodrigues, Jason Williams and Nat Pinney all having half-hit shots scrambled away but there was little to really trouble Borough keeper Valery Pajetat. At the other end, Minter dealt comfortably with anything the home side created, as they seemed happy to settle for the three points and a 13th game unbeaten.
In the final minute Richards was fouled in the box by Rodrigues. Nouble scored twice from the spot in the fixture earlier in the season, but this time Minter saved his kick low down to his right. Scott Durojaiye put the rebound wide when it looked easier to score.
Hawks: Minter, Walsh, Broughton, Ovenden (Hallard 83′), Ambroisine, Christie, Rodrigues, Emberson, Williams, Muggeridge (c) (Unwin 90′), Tighe (Pinney 75′)
Sub not used: Goode
Borough: Pajetat, Richards, O’Donoghue, Durojaiye, Kirby, Mitchell, Nouble, Aresti (Barker 60′), Gabriel (Sappleton 76′), Staunton, Mcdonald (Akinwande 60′)
Subs not used: Stone, Byfield
Goals: Mcdonald 13′, Gabriel 37′, Akinwande 67′ (Haringey)
Yellow cards: Richards, Gabriel, Barker (Haringey); Tighe (Whitehawk)
Hawks Man of the Match: Rhyle Ovenden