Wood Face Tough Cross County Trip.
If you have not been down to Vauxhall Road for a few seasons then put all your memories out of your head! Gone are the days of empty terraces and step four football!
The Tudors home gate averaged 549 last year in what was a record breaking season all round.
Winning the Calor Premier League at a canter has led to even more optimism from the local folk and a huge local following is expected on Tuesday night to watch Dean Brennan’s men enter unchartered territory on home soil.
We last faced Town three seasons running in local Cup ties, starting back in 2006. Just three days after returning from Worksop ( who can ever forget) after booking our place in the Semi Final of the F A Trophy, then Manager Steve Cook took a full strength squad to play out a Herts Charity Cup Semi-Final! That night we were up against ex Wood players in the shape of the legendary John Lawford, plus Steve Sinclair. Goal machine Anthony Thomas, whose goal scoring record stood until last campaign hit both of Hemel’s goals, but it was not enough on the night with us going through by the odd goal in five.
The following season we contested the Hertfordshire Senior Cup Semi Final when one Dean Brennan pulled the strings giving the now Gaffer’s side a 2-1 victory over us.
Our last competitive meeting the following season saw us redress the balance. Again contesting the Semi Final of the Senior Cup the result was a narrow 1-0 victory. We did win the Final beating Ware 5-2, but it was little compensation for a dismal end to the season which saw us relegated from the Ryman Premier League on the final day, only to win a reprieve at the hands of the demise of Halifax Town!
How times have changed for both teams! The Tudors have just won their opening tie at Basingstoke, their first ever game at step two of the Non League hierarchy. Jordan Parkes scored the only goal of the game.
The trip to Hemel is one that leaves Wood Boss Ian Allinson full of trepidation, “ They did not score 128 goals in the League last season for nothing! Dean has done an excellent job there and has strengthened wisely to make the step up. I am expecting nothing other than an extremely telling evening!”.
With just 14 miles separating the two side there are understandably a few old Wood players enjoying the glory days at Vauxhall Road. Lewis Toomey found the net on thirty one occasions last year, whilst David Hutton and recent signing Wes Daly are also plying their trade there.
However the last word goes to Ben Mackey who broke Thomas’ goal scoring record with a staggering 43 goals in all competitions last season.
Our excellent start against Farnborough means both sides have maximum points, a record that will fall for one or both come 9.45pm on Tuesday night!
There is no excuse for not turning out to watch the rarity that is a local derby, so please show your support for Ian and the boys!
Hemel Hempstead Town v Boreham Wood.
Tuesday August 12th, kick off 7.45pm.
Vauxhall Road, Hemel Hempstead. HP2 4HW.