Battling qualities to the fore for Hatfield Town as they continue to fight to the bitter end
PUBLISHED: 10:33 12 March 2019 | UPDATED: 10:33 12 March 2019
Hatfield Town's fate in Spartan South Midlands League Division One may be looking bleaker by the week but they are still scrapping for their lives - with a battling 2-2 draw away to Park View their latest result.
The Blue Boys remain rooted to the foot of the table and with games running out to save themselves from relegation, they would have targeted the match in Wood Green as a potential three points.
However, after going 2-0 down with just 20 minutes to go, they needed all of their fighting qualities to grab a point.
The first period saw Hatfield start well, forcing saves from the Park View keeper and having plenty of set pieces.
The goal never came though with Jay Welsh having the best chance of the half but his effort was cleared off the line.
Their confidence should have been boosted early in the second half when goalkeeper James Weatherill made up for conceding a penalty but then saving the subsequent spot-kick.
But Town continued to sleep their way through the opening stages and after surviving that scare, they conceded a second penalty, this time after a foul by Draper.
Park View changed their taker and this time Magnus Orelaja made no mistake.
And it got worse before it got better with a second home goal from substitute Francis Williams.
With nothing to lose manager Jason Beck threw all three substitutes into the mix, including himself as they went to an attacking 4-2-4.
It almost paid instant dividends when Beck hit a post but the player-manager was not to be denied and he rose highest to head home an Andrew Simmons free-kick.
At this stage tempers started to flare and with challenges flying in, cards were inevitable.
An altercation between the Park View keeper and Beck ending in both teams coming together and both being shown the red card, followed by two more from Park View and a penalty to Hatfield in the dying moments.
Glenn Draper kept his cool to earn Town a draw.
The game had followed an unlucky 2-0 loss at home to unbeaten league leaders Harefield United on Tuesday.
Beck was again involved, forced to don the keeper’s gloves with Weatherill unavailable.
And the boss was unable to stop two second-half strikes finding the net.
It was tough on Hatfield who had more than matched the top dogs and left some wondering where the club would be if they had this side for a full season.