AT LONG, long last Mark Hawthorne is finally celebrating his first win as Horsham YMCA manager.
The side have been unlucky in some of seven games since he took over as boss, but against Selsey on Saturday an early goal from Matt Crane sent them on their way before Tim Martin sealed a 2-0 win from the penalty spot before half-time.
“It’s been a long time, too long really,” said a relieved Hawthorne. “We did alright Saturday, although we have probably played better football and not got anything out of it. But we were very organised and hard to break down, I don’t think they had a shot on target all game.
“So I’m very happy we took our chances and got the win away from home.”
Visiting YM were ahead inside five minutes when Ashley Dugdale’s long throw dropped to Crane inside the box and the defender smashed it home with his left foot.
The game was not littered with chances, but YM were given a golden chance when Martin beat the home keeper to the ball and was taken out in the box. The forward dusted himself off to fire home from 12 yards to make it 2-0 at half-time.
YM’s tight defence denied the home strikers even a sighter at goal while at the other end Harry Lowe came close to a third when he struck the crossbar with a free kick.
The only blemish was a second booking for Dean Wright at the end of the match.
The victory ended YM’s miserly run of 13 games without a win, though Hawthorne believes there is plenty of work to be done to ensure the club don’t suffer a second relegation.
He said: “I’ve been told three can go down so from my point of view I have to assume that will be the case. We’ve not been as bad as our run suggests, and we have four games left and I’m aiming for us to win three of them.
“Confidence is growing and the lads are working really hard. It’s going to go to the end I’m sure but I have faith in my squad.”