Burgess Hill Town 2 Whitstable Town 1
Ryman Football League Division One (South)
Tuesday 14th February 2014
Whitstable Town went down to in-form Burgess Hill Town on a wet West Sussex Tuesday evening.
The Hillians took the early play to Town and had their first chance in the first minute when Joe Keehan shot straight at Town keeper Matt Byott. The hosts were in charge at this stage and had their next opportunity after four minutes when Byott did well to tip over a shot from Greg Luer. Eventually the pressure told and Danny Curd thumped in a header from a Curtis Gayler corner giving Byott no chance. This seemed to spark Whitstable into life and they could have got an equaliser after 13 minutes when Craig Thompson lobbed Alan Mansfield in the Hillians goal.
Unfortunately Charlie Smith could not quite convert the chance. Within a minute Smith was again in the action but shot wide of the target. He again had a shot deflected wide after 17 minutes. Town continued to create chances and when the ball came out to Scott Heard he also fired wide. The balance of the half passed back to the hosts as after 27 minutes Gayler hammered the ball against the inside of the right hand post and the ball rebounded into Byott’s hands. Five minutes later Keehan headed wide. Byott was back in the action nine minutes before half time when he blocked a Keehan attempt. Town had worked hard to keep the score down but Burgess Hill went in with a deserved one nil lead.
The second half started in a similar manner and the home side thought they had increased their lead after 49 minutes when Pat Harding tapped in from a cross but the linesman was flagging for offside. Harding was looking dangerous and had two more opportunities after 57 and 59 minutes but both went wide. Town however did continue to compete and on 68 minutes they were level when a Steve Hafner corner found Laurence Harvey who headed down into the corner of the net. Town were now showing signs of getting on top and a free kick from Hafner from the edge of the area
went just over the bar. However two Burgess Hill substitutions seemed to breathe new life into the Hillians and after 75 minutes they got their reward when a Luer cross found Curd who headed his second goal of the evening. Pressure continued from the hosts as they went looking for a third. Luer had a 79th minute shot deflected wide and Paul Armstrong pulled a shot wide when it look easier to hit the target with nine minutes left. There was little further action as Burgess Hill held onto their deserved 2-1 win.
Town now have lost four league games on the spin so there is a need for a reaction to bring back the recent excellent FA Trophy form earlier in the season.
Team: Byott, Maguire, Webb, Hafner, Harvey, Brown, Heard ( Simon 75mins), Keyte, Thompson, Smith C (Baverstock 60 mins), Mackenzie (Wells J 55mins)