TOM BECK made the perfect exit from the regular Watford IFC squad, signing off with a striker’s goal as he heads for a permanent work contract in Germany. In a chance-a-minute goalfest at Parmiter’s School, Watford IFC record a welcome first win of the 2017/18 season against the spirited visitors from Hampton & Richmond.
Three goals within the first 20 minutes of the match effectively set the tone for a relatively comfortable home success for the Hornets over the Beavers.
Mike Viney notched his maiden WIFC goal when he headed home Richard Walker’s corner, then two clinical finishes from striker Mark O’Connor had Watford firmly in control, but Hampton hit back from a free-kick to make it 3-1 at half-time.
Charlie Wood’s clinical strike made it four with a top-corner bullet, and Walker hit the crossbar before Hampton scored again. Stuart Nicholls’ cross then caused a fifth, when his far-post delivery cannoned back from the post and then in off the hapless Beavers’ keeper.
The visitors made it 5-3 with a scrambled effort from a corner, but there was still time for Beck to shine before his move to the European mainland. Beck latched onto a through-ball, held off his man and then – like a good striker would – drilled the ball across the goalie and into the far corner of the net.
He was immediately subbed, albeit with only 15 minutes left, for his brazen temerity in firing home – very much out of keeping with his usual habit of close-range headed goals!
Ally Hill, moving out of goal for the game’s last portion, stroked home a Hornets’ seventh when he finished off the move of the match involving Matts Ainsley and Ladell, Joel Moody, O’Connor and Wood.
Hampton are always good-natured opposition and this encounter was no different, with the Beavers putting up a fine show despite having just the bare 11.
Watford’s Man-of-the-Match award went to the composed defending of John Sitkowski.
Watford: Ally Hill; Matt Ladell, Mike Viney, John Sitkowski, Matt Ainsley; Joel Moody, Richard Walker, Stuart Nicholls, Richard Murphy; Mark O’Connor, Tom Beck (C). Subs used: Adam Gallichan, Charlie Wood.