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WATCH: Dulwich Hamlet 1-0 Witham Town | Match highlights with commentary
WATCH: Dulwich Hamlet 1-0 Witham Town | Match highlights with commentary: bit.ly/Dul1-0Wit
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Hamlet 1 Witham 0
A bit of a hard slog in the end against a determined and abrasive visiting side. I don't think Witham had a real attempt at goal until after half time, by which time the Hamlet could have been out of sight with a bit more luck and slightly sharper finishing.
Hamlet were denied a clear penalty after five minutes when a defender almost pulled the shirt off Koroma's back as he turned inside the box. From fifty yards away at the back of the stand I sould see the number 9 on our man's back was almost under his armpit, so how the referee failed to notice from at least five times closer and with no other players in the way is beyond me. I suspect the reality is that referees like to ignore these fouls as they know they can't possible see all of them when goalmouths are crowded at set pieces, so if they give none of them they won't be accused of inconsistency. The trouble is that in a one sided match wwhere one team is doing most of the attacking, all the decisions go against the same team.
Our best effort of the first half was a powerful hader by Koroma that was brilliantly saved by the keeper at his near post, while Witham made life difficult by hounding us relentlessly to deny us time and space on the ball. I didn't think they could possibly keep that up for ninety minutes, and so it proved as we begam to pull them around after half time using the entire width of the pitch. Patience paid off on the hour when the ball was passed insdie to Vidal, twenty five yards out in a central position, and he fired a spectacular first time shot into the keeper's top left hand corner - a real Christmas Cracker!
Former Hampton winger Luke Wanadio made his debut for Hamlet. I thought he was their best player when we won there late last season, causing us real problems with his pace, stamina and skill, so potentially a very useful new recruit indeed. Ther was also a second debut off the bench for Mu Maan, another forward who had a brief spell for us three seasons ago.
Kevin James collected a nasty looking head injury casued by what appeared to be an elbow to teh forehead and left teh field with a heavily bandaged head, but later he was back in the bar having apparently had several stiches without looking too badly scarred, so hopefully not as bad as it first seemed.
Team (4-2-3-1): Wilson - Abnett, Forbes(c), Pinnock, Shaw - James, Dixon - Wanadio, Vidal, Clunis - Koroma.
Subs: Hibbert (for James), Ottaway (for Koroma), Maan (for Dixon), Kamra, Jarrett (not used).