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Hampton & Richmond 1 Dartford 2 match report

ByMatthew Panting

Dartford made it back-to-back away wins on Tuesday night with a battling display at Hampton.

First-half goals from Ky Marsh-Brown and Elliott Romain - both players signed by new Darts boss Steve King - lifted them up to 13th in the table, just five points outside the play-off places.

Dartford striker Elliott Romain - on target at Hampton on Tuesday night. Picture: Phil Lee FM20962806
Dartford striker Elliott Romain - on target at Hampton on Tuesday night. Picture: Phil Lee FM20962806

Both teams took their time to settle although referee Sunny Gill opted to book Darts' Marsh-Brown on 14 minutes for a dive, as the lively forward lost his footing on the edge of the penalty area.

Charlie Wassmer and Matt Young both went close with headers for Hampton while Norman Wabo headed Marsh-Brown's cross against the outside of the upright at the other end.

Darts went ahead on 25 minutes when a clever switch in play by Cameron Brodie saw Liam Gordon find Marsh-Brown, whose early shot beat keeper Dan Lincoln at his near post.

The lead lasted just two minutes, however, as Hampton's Tyrone Lewthwaite found space down the side of the Darts defence and, having drawn out keeper Mark Smith, unselfishly squared the ball for Sam Deadfield to score into an empty net.

Darts went back in front 10 minutes before the break when Wassmer's wild challenge sent Romain tumbling in the box.

The striker - who gave the two centre-backs a horrid evening - picked himself up to score from the spot, despite Lincoln getting a hand to the ball and diverting it against the inside of the post.

Lincoln then denied Romain his second of the night, brilliantly keeping out his volley before producing an even better stop as Romain went for a spectacular overhead kick.

After the break, Dartford defended deeply but were never really troubled, although skipper Tom Bonner did well to block Lewthwaite’s low drive.

Romain continued to prove a nuisance and he combined well with Liam Gordon down the left midway through the half, the latter denied by the legs of keeper Lincoln at his near post.

Hampton lost both centre-backs to injury while Darts went to five at the back for the final 15 minutes with the introduction of Ronnie Vint.

With 10 minutes left, Ruaridh Donaldson’s 30-yard left-foot shot went just over for Hampton while at the other end it needed an excellent block by Young to deny Gordon as Darts broke on the counter attack through substitute Darren McQueen.

Hampton: Lincoln, Young, Farrell, Inman (Hill 55mins), Wassmer (McAuley 70mins), Cox, Donaldson, Grey, Orsi-Dadomo, Lewthwaite, Deadfield (Skinner 70mins). Subs not used: Louis, Soares.

Dartford: Smith, Gibbons, Gordon, Crook, Hill, Bonner, Brodie, Allen (Vint 75mins), Romain, Marsh-Brown (Pugh 75mins), Wabo (McQueen 78mins). Subs not used: Wanadio, Hayes.

Attendance: 451.

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