The Hawks advanced to the Second Round of the Sussex Transport Senior Cup on Tuesday night following a frenetic 5-2 victory over Crowborough Athletic.
The visitors have been enjoying a fine season in the County Premier Division, sitting atop the league as we near the month of November. It was by no means the hardest of possible competitors, but a banana skin for sure as manager Shaun Saunders named an almost full-strength side.
And that no risk strategy appeared to pay off. Imran Kayani is a man in form, and he proved a handful in an opening half commandeered by the Hawks. He’d fire agonisingly wide with 25 minutes played, before finding the net 15 minutes later following a fine lob that soared over the head of Cameron Hall.
Attacking the Din second half, that gradient advantage proved the difference in a second chapter that spawned a whopping six goals, four of which would be nestling in the Crowborough net.
Charlie Walker had missed the past few matches with injury, but any signs of weariness were swiftly diminished when he struck low from 20 yards to double the advantage, as Whitehawk wrested complete control of the contest.
Josh Nandhra arrived onto the pitch to make his first team debut after a string of fine performances in the youth team, and he’d provide the assist for the third goal on 70 minutes, feeding Walker for his second of the night.
A minute later and it was 4-0. Kayani again, he jinked his way through the defence before planting his effort high into the corner of the net to put the tie beyond any doubt.
The visitors did pull a goal back through Harvey Killick late on, only for Walker to grab the match ball after slamming home the rebound from Charlie Lambert’s post-smacked strike.
There was still time for a seventh goal, and this would come for the away side once again as Harry London stroked home to cut the scoreline to 5-2, and that’s just how it would finish as the Hawks await their opponents for the next round of the competition.