Gallery: Griggs sent off as City crash
PUBLISHED: 14:14 02 March 2008 | UPDATED: 21:05 26 October 2009
Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division Welwyn Garden City 0 Hertford Town 3 DAN Griggs was sent off as WGC crashed 3-0 at home to local rivals Hertford Town. Midfielder Griggs received his marching orders late in the first half on Saturday for a
Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division
Welwyn Garden City 0 Hertford Town 3
DAN Griggs was sent off as WGC crashed 3-0 at home to local rivals Hertford Town.
Midfielder Griggs received his marching orders late in the first half on Saturday for a moment of madness with the game still goalless.
The derby swung Hertford's way on 39 minutes when Griggs inexplicably elbowed Ryan Wade in the face right in front of the referee.
The official had no option but to show the City player a straight red card and to add insult to injury, the visitors took the lead from the resultant free-kick.
Shaun Crossley moved the ball smartly to Kevin Cooper and the striker lobbed the ball past home stopper Simon Bartley to put Hertford a goal up with their only decent chance of the first half.
City's 10 men conceded two more after the break with Crossley and Lee Roberts inflicting more pain on the hosts to wrap up a 3-0 victory for Dave Greenwood's side.
The defeat was WGC's 19th of the Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division season and leaves Howard Cowley's men 15th in the table.
With Hertford fielding a couple of former Citizens in their ranks - Pablo Ardiles and Ryan Redford - and ex-Blue Michael Bakare playing for the home side, local pride as well as points were at stake on Saturday at Herns Lane.
There was a stiff breeze blowing the length of the pitch to WGC's advantage in the first half.
Using this to the full, the Citizens had their visitors penned in their own half for much of the first half hour, winning no less than six corners during this period.
However, attempts at inswinging corners generally saw the ball go straight out of play, so much of their advantage was wasted by City.
Jake Parratt turned well in the box and was unlucky to see his snap shot narrowly miss the wrong side of the upright.
Craig Tomkins then brought a smart save from Mark Virgo and the ball ballooned off the keeper's boot and went over the bar for yet another corner.
Bakare was also prominent down the left wing and a shot from the former Hertford player went narrowly wide in the 33rd minute.
The game's turning point came six minutes later when Griggs was dismissed for his rash elbow and Cooper added to City's misery seconds later with the only goal of the first half.
City reshuffled their pack at half-time and Bakare was replaced by Ryan Mattos for the second period.
Hertford, however, now held all the aces with the advantage of the following wind, as well as an extra man.
The visitors made hard work of adding to their tally though, and Redford was lucky to receive only a yellow card for a two-footed lunge on 55 minutes.
Ian Cooper soon followed Redford into the book, and although City offered no real threat apart from a firm strike from Parratt that brought a flying save and catch from Virgo, it looked as though Hertford might have to settle for just the one goal.
The second finally arrived on 73 minutes and like the first came from a free-kick.
This time Roberts floated the ball into the home box where Kevin Cooper appeared to handle the ball on its way to the far post.
Crossley then stooped to head his first senior goal for the Blues, playing in their red away kit.
Redford made a typical penetrating run at the home defence, but saw his shot go over the bar as Hertford looked for a third goal.
It eventually arrived on 85 minutes when Roberts scored a special goal, using his skill to tee up the ball before sliding it past a helpless Bartley.
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