JC MSFL PREMIER DIVISION
FAITHFOLD A 1 HENDON UNITED SPORTS CLUB A 1
Hendon boss David Garbacz says he is pleased with a point as last season's champions were pushed all the way by early pace-setters Faithfold A at the Hive.
The top-of-the-table battle finished honours even at the Hive as Faithfold made it 10 points out of a possible 12 in a hard-earned draw.
Missing captain Alex Levack, who was with his wife celebrating the birth of their second daughter, Faithfold went ahead through Dan Howard.
Ari Last levelled for Hendon with a wonderful free-kick.
Hendon manager David Garbacz told JC Sport: "This was a top quality match played in difficult conditions between two top teams.
"It was very even thorughout and I thought overall a draw was a fair result.
"We went behind to a goal conceded from a soft free kick and faced our first real test this season. We kept plugging away and eventually equalised with a quality free kick from Ari Last, which capped off a fine individual performance from him.
"I was really impressed with Faithfold and there is no doubt they will be there or thereabouts in the final shake-up.
"We had two big players missing today in josh Lipman and Ben Lauffer and Ari Nevies came in for his debut and was excellent.
"Overall this was a good point for us and we go away satisfied."
Faithfold boss Zuriel Solomon told JC Sport: "It was a tough game against a good team, but we more then held our own and thought we created more and better chances. I'm happy we took a point.
"I was proud again of our hard work and second half our football. I thought we defended really well all game but gave away a few silly free kicks which they scored from."