Hartley Wintney welcomed league leaders Raynes Park Vale and after an entertaining match, it finished with honours even and another point each.

The Vale started briskly and almost went ahead in 30 seconds.

Charlie Penney got free on the left and his shot from a tight angle went wide. 

The visitors had a good spell of early pressure and on 14 minutes a cross from Brad Sweeney on the right just eluded incoming Vale forwards.  

Raynes Park continued to press and 4 minutes later a free flowing move down the left ended with James Dickson seeing his shot  bounce and go just over the crossbar.

Hartley came into the match and went ahead on 21 minutes.  Vale keeper Billy Bishop was forced into a hurried clearance and the ball arrived at Marcio Neves. The Row player looked up and lobbed the ball over the stranded Bishop and into the net. (1-0)

On 36 minutes defining moments came in the match.  Row centre forward Conor Lynch went down in the penalty area and Hartley had a good claim for a penalty waved away. The ball went down to the opposite end of the field and the visitors were awarded a free kick on the right which looked on the soft side. The delivery from Daniel Moody was perfect and Charlie Penney headed home (1-1)

Hartley put together a decent flowing move on 42 minutes which ended with Mason Obeng shooting wide. On the stroke of half time a corner on the right for Vale found the head of former Row favourite Matt Drage who saw his effort saved by Callum Coulter in the Hartley goal.

Half Time:  Hartley Wintney 1  Raynes Park Vale  1

Hartley started the better in the second period.  On 52 minutes a good run and cross from Adam Payce on the right found Obeng who headed wide when well placed.

Three minutes later a good surging run through midfield by Moody set up Palace Francis who saw his effort saved by Coulter. On 61 minutes a loose header in defence by Hartley gave Francis a chance who drove his effort wide. Five minutes later with Row players seemingly losing their footing on occasions a chance fell to Penney who shot wide.

Hartley had a good spell but on 70 minutes it was from a loose pass on when attacking enabled Raynes Park to break quickly.  Sweeney got free and was desperately unlucky to see his powerful shot crash off the underside of the crossbar and come out.

In the closing stages both sides had chances. Sweeney again was in a good position in front of goal but shot over the crossbar. The final effort came from Hartley when Ik Hill created space and saw his shot from 20 yards saved by the well positioned Bishop in the Vale goal.

All in all a good match. Both sides had probably equal possession with Raynes Park getting more of the chances.  Hartley’s young side continue to improve.

Full Time:  Hartley Wintney 1   Raynes Park Vale  1