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Pools Get Pre-Season Off To High-Scoring Start

6 July 2017

Pools put in a professional opening display for new boss Craig Harrison in their first pre-season match of the campaign.

With Harrison changing all ten outfield players at half-time, both sides put in plenty of energy and enthusiasm in a game that finished 6-0 to Pools. 

The game was only 90 seconds in when there was a long delay for an injury to a Billingham Town player who came off badly as he went to challenge Scott Harrison.

The Town man had to be stretchered from the field with what looked a serious injury.

Once the game was back underway and Pools were able to get into their stride, they dominated possession, with new keeper Scott Loach seeing very little of the ball.

Rhys Oates was brightest for Pools in the first half, causing problems for the hosts with his presence in the final third.

And the forward created a good opening early on, using his strength to push in from the right and play the ball into the box where Michael Woods arrived but sent his shot just wide.

Trialist Junior Mondal intercepted a Billingham break to get the ball into the box for Josh Hawkes who calmly sent the ball past the keeper to make it 1-0 just before the quarter-hour mark.

It was 2-0 less than five minutes later as Oates got a goal; Woods slipped the ball through for him and the forward scored on the turn to double the lead.

Oates tried again as he turned to fire on goal but this time watched it deflected over the bar, before Scott Harrison had his close-range effort well-saved by the Town keeper.

Hawkes got his second and Pools’ third just after the half-hour mark, forcing his way into the box to fire home and Oates also got his second before half time. Lewis Hawkins put a great ball into the box which Oates rose well to meet and send his header into the back of the net to finish the first half at 4-0.

It was all change at half time, with only Scott Loach remaining from the first 45.

Jack Munns linked up well with Nicky Deverdics early on to create a good opening and, with Blair Adams joining the action from the left, the full back played a good ball into the box where trialist Curtis Obeng headed just wide.

Scott Loach made his first save of the game just after the hour mark after a good break by the hosts; number 11 cut in from the left to fire at the near post but the Pools keeper got down to block the effort out.

And the Billingham keeper pulled off his own good save shortly after, denying Padraig Amond a goal after a great ball in from Nicky Deverdics. The keeper then collected Amond’s headed effort from the resulting corner.

Ryan Donaldson stung the hands of the Billingham keeper with a fierce strike from distance before Amond did get his goal; the corner picked out the striker rising in the box and his header beat the stopper to make it 5-0.

And it was a similar story for the next one on 77 minutes as Amond out-jumped the keeper to meet a corner into the box and headed home to make it 6-0.

Jack Munns endeared himself to the watching Pools fans with a lively display in the second half.

The game finished at 6-0 and it was good, energetic opening pre-season match for Craig Harrison’s side.

Full Time: Billingham Town 0 Pools 6

Pools (First Half): Loach, Richardson, Baynes, Magnay, Harrison, George, Hawkes, Hawkins, Oates, Woods, Mondal.
Subs: Alex, Blackford, Travers.

Pools (Second Half): Loach, Obeng, Adams, Nearney, Donnelly, Smith, Donaldson, Deverdics, Cassidy, Amond, Munns
Subs: Alex, Baynes, Hakes, Blackford, Travers. 

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