Dartford go for a third consecutive win this Bank Holiday Monday when they travel to Isthmian Premier champions Hampton and Richmond Borough.
The Darts who won their first game of the season last weekend doubled their win tally on Saturday thanks to an unlikely source. With time running out at Princes Park against another newly promoted side Hungerford Town, goalkeeper Deren Ibrahim took a free kick inside his own half which found the back of the net. Alex Brown extended the Dartford lead when he too scored his first goal for the club.
Tony Burman had to wait until the fifth match of the campaign to notch the maiden win when they beat Weston-super-Mare last weekend. The squad is now taking shape after a spate of injuries and suspensions and with only one defeat this season the Darts are looking a more solid outfit.
Tom Bonner will return from his suspension whilst Keaton Wood served his and played in the victory over Hungerford Town. Striker, Duane Ofori-Acheampong and midfielder Lee Noble are getting minutes under their belts whilst skipper Elliot Bradbrook and forward Andy Pugh made appearances off the bench as part of their full recovery.
Hampton and Richmond Borough won the Isthmian Premier League title last term on the final day of the season. A 95 point haul and 105 goals saw them worthy winners and earned them a return to the National South, after four years away.
The Beavers have made their best league start in four years opening with victories over Bishop’s Stortford and Easrbourne Borough. Although Alan Dowson’s side lost the first home game since September last year when they were beaten by East Thurrock United, the Middlesex club have since gone three games unbeaten. A couple of 4-2 wins over Margate and Wealdstone sandwiched a 2-2 draw with Truro City.
League top scorers with 15 so far this campaign, Hampton and Richmond Borough have shipped in nine. Jamal Lowe is the striker in form with six goals in his last five appearances, leaving him joint second in the National South goalscoring charts. Manager Dowson highlighted the defensive frailties prior the Wealdstone match branding some of the goal conceded this term as sloppy.
Former Dartford midfielder Nathan Collier rejoined the Beavers this summer after a spell with Eastbourne Borough. He signed for the Darts in May 2012 from Hampton and Richmond Borough making over a hundred appearances scoring six goals under Tony Burman.
Dartford’s last trip to the Beveree ended in a 3-1 victory despite finding themselves a goal down. Elliot Bradbrook equalised after James Simmonds had the Middlesex club in front. Bradbrook then netted a stunning volley to put the Darts ahead and Jacob Erskine scored the third, against his former club. Tony Burman guided Dartford to a league double over the Beavers that season.
At the end of that 2011/12 campaign Dartford were promoted via the playoffs whilst Hampton and Richmond were relegated to the Isthmian Premier.
Current League Form (last six games)
|Hampton & Richmond Borough (WDWLWW)||Dartford (WWDDLD)|
|East Thurrock United||H||1-2||Chelmsford City||A||1-1|
Head to Head
Hampton and Richmond Borough wins: 3 / Dartford wins: 3 / Draws: 0
|21.01.2012||Hampton & Richmond Borough||1||Dartford||3|
|20.08.2011||Dartford||2||Hampton & Richmond Borough||1|
|19.02.2011||Dartford||0||Hampton & Richmond Borough||4|
|17.08.2010||Hampton & Richmond Borough||1||Dartford||0|
|27.09.2008||Dartford||0||Hampton & Richmond Borough||1|
The only league meetings between the two sides were in Dartford’s last spell in the National South. Both teams completed doubles most recently the Darts in 2011/12, whilst the Beavers achieved the same feat the season before. They have also met twice in the F.A Cup and share a win each
Five players took part in the last trip to the Beveree in January 2012, Tom Bonner, Lee Noble, Elliot Bradbrook and Danny Harris all started, Ryan Hayes made a substitute appearance.
Elliot Bradbrook has scored three in his last two appearances against Hampton and Richmond Borough.
Goalkeeper, Deren Ibrahim has scored this season before any of Dartford’s strikers and is the only non midfielder to have netted for the club this term.
On This Day
Unbeaten in their last three on 29 August, Dartford won 2-0 against Margate a year ago. Lee Noble scored after half an hour, Lee Burns was sent off in the second half and Elliot Bradbrook secured the points. Five years ago the Darts christened their new scoreboard by celebrating a 3-1 home victory over Bromley. Elliot Bradbrook’s goal was the first one registered after six minutes but was cancelled out with twenty five minutes to go. Charlie Sheringham scored a spot kick and Danny Harris bundled in a third to keep Dartford unbeaten in six at the time. In the Isthmian Premier League back in 2009, Dartford earned a home draw with Wealdstone. The Stones took the lead but Lee Burns levelled the scores as it stayed 1-1. The last defeat on this day came sixteen years ago when Newport Isle of Wight won 2-0 in the Southern Division One Eastern Division.