Hemsworth MW end encouraging season in highest ever position

Andy Hayward, who retired as a player in Hemsworth MW's game at Rainworth.
Andy Hayward, who retired as a player in Hemsworth MW's game at Rainworth.

Hemsworth MW ended their encouraging first season in the Premier Division of the Toolstation NCE League on a high note with victory at Rainworth MW on Saturday.

The 2-1 success gave Hemsworth a ninth place finish following promotion last year and is the highest they have ever achieved in their history.

It was a third successive victory for Wayne Benn’s men as they ended the campaign in good style to suggest they can push for an even higher position next season.

They would have been much closer to the top teams this time if it had not been for a real blip in form early in 2017 when they went on a run of just one win in nine matches.

They snapped out of that to finish with a flourish, however, and ended with a solid display away to a Rainworth side down in 18th place.

It was the home team that took the lead as Ross Goodwin came up with a good finish in the box after racing onto a flick on from a long ball on 22 minutes.

But within six minutes Wells were level when Billy Law hooked the ball on after a corner had been knocked down in the area.

The winner came in the second half, on the hour mark from another corner as Nick Guest got ahead of his marker to glance a header into the net for his 19th goal of the season, taking him level with Law as top scorer.

Manager Benn is delighted with the efforts of his players in their first season in the top flight.

He said: “We have finished the season off very well and secured a ninth placed finish which is a satisfactory first season at this level for us.

“To be only four points off sixth spot is a good effort by everyone and you can’t help thinking what might have been had it not been for a really poor January and February.

“It’s now time for a well deserved rest, but not for too long as we start to put plans in place for next season.

“We have given ourselves a good platform to build on and the aim as always is to improve on what we have done this season.”

Last Saturday’s game also marked the end of an illustrious career for Hemsworth’s Andy Hayward, who at the age of 46 played his last game.

A presentation was made to the player after the game and another one is planned for the presentation night which takes place in early June.