Record breaking Beavers not yet tested, says Harper

First published in Sport Croydon Guardian: Photograph of the Author by , Sports Editor

Hampton & Richmond Borough have broken a club record after not conceding a goal in seven matches, but boss Mark Harper has claimed their opponents have lacked the quality needed to breach his defence.
 

The Beavers’ recent clean sheet against Enfield, along with clean sheets in the opening four games of the season as well as the final game of last season, broke a 45-year-old record.
 

The new record was extended to seven matches last Saturday as the Beavers defeated AFC Kempston Rovers 3-0 away in the FA Cup first qualifying round.
 

However, Harper has highlighted tomorrow’s Ryman League Premier Division clash with high-flying Lowestoft as a true test of his defence’s qualities.
 

Lowestoft are a single point behind the table-topping Beavers – the only team yet to concede a goal in the Ryman League this season.
 

Although Harper admitted his defence had ridden its luck.
 

He said: “We haven’t come across a side that has been clinical enough in front of goal.
 

“If we had met a side who had someone who could have put the ball in the back of the net then I don’t think we would be sitting on the clean sheets.
 

“Overall, I cannot deny I am pleased, but realistically I am not happy that we are giving sides opportunities to score, even though they haven’t had the quality to  put the ball away.
 

“We can only ride our luck for so long.
 

“Lowestoft are a well-established side who have started well and scored a lot of goals, although they have conceded quite a few.
 

“They were there or thereabouts last season and I am sure they’ll be doing the same this year. It will be a good marker for us.”

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