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The end of March is nigh and with it we move swiftly onto the final day of the month, the 31st, and a look back at matches on this day across the club’s history.
And beginning in 1923 when French soldiers who had begun an occupation of the Ruhr area in German over unpaid war reparations fired on workers at the Krupp works in Essen, killing 13, Hampstead Town found themselves playing the second match of their tour of Jersey winning 6-3 against a Jersey Island XI. Freddie Young grabbed two goals that were added to by one each from F Butler, Cecil Wise, Travers Day and Lewis Smith.
Five years later in 1928 a visit to Windsor & Eton ended in a 3-1 win before a 1934 match against Enfield at Claremont Road ended goalless, this coming just 24-hours after a 6-2 defeat to the E’s away from home.
Mac Cochrane was on target in 1945 as Golders Green won 1-0 against Walthamstow Avenue in the Herts & Middlesex County League at Claremont Road, this as US artillery begins its artillery offensive on the island of Okinawa in the Pacific, and half a dozen years on in 1951 Leytonstone were defeated 3-2 in the London Senior Cup to set up a last-four clash with Wimbledon. Dexter Adams, Roy Stroud and Bob Avis were on target for the Greens.
Eleven years later in 1962 a six-goal thriller was fought out at Leyton, the score ending 3-3 thanks to strikes from John Hazell, Denny Smith and Miles Spector and in 1965 a Danny Lakey strike wasn’t enough to stop Kingstonian upsetting the club’s Isthmian League title challenge as the K’s won 2-1, also producing the club’s first defeat on 31st March.
The first leg of the Middlesex Senior Cup final against old rivals Enfield in 1973 at Claremont Road ended all-square 1-1 with both goals coming from the penalty spot. Fred Pudney gave the Greens the advantage before Joe Adams equalised 18 minutes from time, Peter Deadman having been adjudged to have committed handball inside the penalty area.
Four years later in 1977 Sutton United were defeated in the Isthmian League Cup thanks to goals from Alan Campbell, Bobby Southam and Tony Field to set up a quarter final tie with Woking. Then, moving ahead to 1984 a visit to Worthing ended in success as Gary Allen and Richard Bradford struck in a 2-1 win.
Two years later in 1986 the Greens needed extra time to defeat a Southall side that had reached the FA Vase final a year earlier and that included future England striker Les Ferdinand in the final of the Middlesex Senior Cup. With the game goalless after 90-minutes two goals in the second period of extra-time at Southbury Road from Colin Tate saw the famous old trophy return to Claremont Road, this on the day that Hampton Court palace was badly damaged by a fire that left 1 person dead.
Steve Bracken was on target in 1990 as Redbridge Forest were held to a 1-1 draw in the Isthmian League as protests grew around the UK against the introduction of the Poll Tax. Seven years later we saw the birth of a Hendon legend, albeit in fairly understated circumstances as Gary McCann made his Hendon debut at Claremont Road against Aylesbury United in a 3-0 defeat.
In 2001 a visit to eventual champions Farnborough Town ended in a 2-0 defeat, this on the day that Arsenal hero David Rocastle sadly passed away at the age of 33 and the Schumacher brothers locked out the front row in qualifying for the Brazilian Grand Prix. Half a dozen years later in 2007 and Dean Green’s early dismissal did nothing to help the Greens overcome Ashford Town (Middx) who comfortably beat Gary McCann’s side 2-0 at Short Lane.
There was marginally better luck two years later as a clash with Sutton United at Vale Farm ended 0-0, this in spite of the Greens again finding themselves reduced to 10-men with the dismissal of Kevin Maclaren. Then a 5-minutes of madness just after half-time saw Lewes score three times at The Dripping Pan to comeback from 1-0 down to go 3-1 up rendering Scott Cousins’ strike moot as the Rooks held on for a 3-2 win. Belal Aite-ouakrim had earlier given the visitors a first-half lead.
We finish three years ago as the club’s play-off charge continued to gather momentum with a 2-0 win over a Metropolitan Police side that included future joint top-scorer Shaquille Hippolyte-Patrick. After Dave Diedhiou had been dismissed on the stroke of half-time an excellent goal by Oliver Sprague and a late second from Josh Walker kept hopes of a top-five finish very much alive.
Of the 17 competitive matches to have taken place on 31st March to date there have been 7 wins, 5 draws and 5 defeats. 24 goals have been scored and 23 conceded.