Tomorrow’s the big one. The winner takes all. Havant & Waterlooville host Chippenham Town – the winner – earn themselves the final playoff place and will go onto the quarter finals of the playoffs against Dartford or Ebbsfleet.
The Hawks have had quite an incredible rollercoaster season, and we find ourselves a point inside the final playoff place. With the Hawks winning just one in thirteen league games, it left them down in 14th with the hope of a playoff place looking unlikely. Fast forward two months and they have now lost just one game in 14. Scoring 23 goals in the last seven home games is not easy, and Paul Doswell’s rejuvenated side look ready for a high-pressure final game.
We come off the back of a good away point, after drawing 0-0 with a sticky Hemel Hempstead side. A total of 0 goals were scored in the home and away ties so I think Doswell will be pleased with not losing a crucial game. It was a vital point because that one point means the Hawks have the advantage on Saturday. We go into the match needing just a point against Chippenham to secure 7th, with the Bluebirds having to leave Havant with all three points to get into the playoff places.
Chippenham, however, definitely have some resilience. On Monday, the side found themselves 2-0 up against Hungerford thanks to strikes from Russe and Young. Ram clawed a goal back for the Crusaders and Tyler levelled the scores in the 90th minutes. Somehow, the Bluebirds managed a winner in the 93rd minute through Noah Coppin and it leaves them just a point outside 7th.
Last time the two sides met, you’d have to go all the way back to August 2021. It was just the one goal that separated the Hawks and the Bluebirds at Hardenhuish Park. Richards’ first half strike was enough for Chippenham to secure all three points. They themselves have been on quite the journey, with Gary Horgan taking over from Mike Cook just a couple of months ago.
It is certain to be a cracking fixture in front of a brilliant crowd at the Draper Tools Community Stadium.
Other final day fixtures are: Bath v Oxford, Braintree v Billericay, Concord v Welling, Dulwich v Hemel, Eastbourne v Dartford, Ebbsfleet v Chelmsford, Havant v Hungerford v Dorking, Maidstone v Hampton and St Albans v Tonbridge
Written by Adam Nixon