Poole Town 1
Hayes & Yeading 4
Poole Town will be left wondering how they managed to concede four in a game they had control of for large periods.
Dolphins restricted their guests to few chances, but the clinical Hayes highlighted the aspects which make them title favourites to edge past Poole.
An unchanged side took to the field for the game, with Luke Burbidge again nowhere to be seen.
The first half performance will likely be remembered for what not transpired, rather than what did. Poole played with confidence and enjoyed large spells of possession, but came close a few times.
Tony Lee was adamant he had beaten the offside trap to poke past Tyla Dickinson, appearing dismayed when the official flagged to deny him.
As expected with 17 goals this campaign, Lee was involved in the thick of it and tricked some around the ground into thinking he had scored. Dickinson palmed the ball to Lee, who bundled into the side netting – causing the net to bulge and fans in the main stand to celebrate.
Despite spending most of the half in and around the Hayes box, Poole could only send shots narrowly over the bar. Declan Rose almost caught Dickinson out with a quickly taken free-kick that kissed the bar on the way over, but Hayes repelled Poole’s most dangerous looking plays.
The game slowly devolved into a stop-start affair with match official Robert Ablitt at the centre of much ire from Poole players, fans and staff alike.
A coming together saw handbags between Dinesh Gillela and Dan Bartlett, eventually leading to most players on the pitch congregating in the middle of the park. Lee was incensed as he was first bundled over, then stamped on and grabbed at right in front of the press box.
Despite being positioned right in front of melee and failing to blow his whistle or attempt to break up the scuffle, the referee produced bookings for Gillela, Bartlett and Lee.
Shortly after the match official would be back at the centre of attention, awarding Hayes a penalty for a fairly innocuous challenge. Tyler Goodrham advanced down the left hand flank before kicking the ball away and running into Bartlett, clearly in a bid to win a spot-kick.
His actions bore fruit, allowing Moses Emmanuel to slot straight down the middle.
Poole continued to play with confidence in the second half, coming close through Genesini who nodded just wide.
But just when Poole were looking comfortable again, some poor defending allowed Emmanuel to find substitute Jalloh at the back post to tap home with Hayes’ first proper chance of the game.
Shellshocked by going two behind, it took a while for Poole to look dangerous again. Hayes were content to sit back and hit Poole on the break – leading to a third goal, finished off by Amartey.
Sean Wright came off the bench for Jamie Whisken and ended up grabbing a consolation goal – stabbing home in a crowed box.
Salt was rubbed in the wounds when a fantastic free-kick by Oluwasanmi Odeulsi made it four a minute from time, meaning Hayes scored four goals from five shots all game.
The scoreline reflective of Poole’s profligate finishing and Hayes’ more clinical efforts, but not the overall game.
Poole: Childs, Rose, Genesini, Spetch, Whisken, Bartlett, Carmichael, Moore, Lee, Holmes, Dickson
Subs: Wickham, Butler (g/k), Wright, Jackson, Fletcher
H&Y: Dickinson, Gillela (Jalloh H-t), Connors, Robinson, McDevitt (C), Frempah, Nasha, Shulton, Emmanuel, Amartey, Goodrham
Subs: Smith (g/k), Hippolyte-Patrick, Odelusi, Meoded
Bookings, Carmichael, Lee, Bartlett; Gillela, McDevitt