MATCH OFFICIALS: Referee – ALEX MATHIESON
Assistants – Andy Jones + Aaron Tree
Once again the fixture list gave Cowes Sports a home game, for the match newly promoted Hamble Club were the visitors to Westwood Park. They have made a decent start to the season finding themselves in the 2nd round proper of the F A Vase whilst sitting comfortably in 10th position in their first season in the Premier Division.
Changes for the Yachtsmen saw Uni lads Ewan Cranwell and Fin Phillips come into the staring line up, replacing Ollie McArthur and the suspended Jimmy Wykes whilst Harry Dye came in with Conor White dropping to the bench.
Prior to kick off both teams gathered around the centre circle as once again Westwood Park fell silent for a minute in memory of Dave Brunt who sadly passed away a few days earlier following a short illness. Dave was a well respected Referee for many years on the Island and also as an Assistant Referee in both the Hampshire League and Wessex League and will be sorely missed. Condolences to his family from all at Cowes Sports FC.
After the big disappointment of last weekends result the home side were looking to impress their fans and could not have asked for a better start to the game as they went ahead in the first minute when John McKie thread the ball through to HARRY DYE who calmly slipped the ball the advancing keepers right into the right corner of the visitors goal. However the home sides joy was short lived as in the 5th minute Doug Rowe made his way into the Cowes area where Ewan Cranwell tripped the Hamble forward in challenging him for the ball. Referee Alex Mathieson pointed for a spot kick which Hamble skipper, NATHAN LYNCH drilled into the bottom left corner of the Cowes goal although keeper Ed Hatt got close to saving. The home team then nearly regained the lead in the 7th minute when Max Drapers free kick from near the home dug out was headed over his own bar by Mike Byrne. Ten minutes later and the visitors speedy winger, Ben Kempton sent a low cross towards the back post, but Mo Nyang failed to get enough of a touch to send the ball into the goal, a let off for Cowes. In the 35th minute a ball into their box saw keeper Rory Anderson and a defender hesitate, John McKie challenged them and the loose ball fell to CONNOR FURMIDGE who rolled the ball into the unguarded net, much to the delight of the crowd. Before the break both John McKie and Connor Furmidge tested their keeper with shots from distance but comfortable saves were made as the Yachtsmen went in at the break ahead.
H-t 2 – 1
The second was not quite as lively as the first, both sides pushing hard without really creating many problems for their opposing keeper. Two early substitutions for the visitors saw Danny Cow and Jack Barnes replaced by Coby Wilson and Alex Blake respectively. The best chance of the second half came in the 61st minute when John McKie broke through with only the keeper to beat whom he tried to lob but only succeeded in playing the ball into Rory Anderson’s hands. Cowes replaced Connor Furmidge with Leigh Mackenzie before Hamble took off Doug Rowe, bringing Sam Wilson on in his place. The nearest either side came to adding to their tally came on 83 minutes when Max Draper and John McKie combined before the latters effort bobbled wide of the left hand post as the home side held on for a much needed three points
A very good response from all following last week, lets hope we can now move on and start to pick up some points away from home.
COWES SPORTS – Ed Hatt, Max Draper, George Carter- Knight, Aidan Bryan Bkd, Craig Insley (c), Ewan Cranwell, John McKie, Harry Dye Bkd, Connor Furmidge(replaced by Leigh Mackenzie 62), Gareth Bricknell Bkd, Finnley Phillips, Subs not used; Conor White, Tom Dye + Dave Thurman
HAMBLE CLUB – Rory Anderson, Ricky Bull, Danny Cox(replaced by Coby Wilson 52), Charlie Wagstaff, Mike Byrne, Ricky Sibley, Mo Nyang, Jack Barnes(replaced by Alex Blake 57), Nathan Lynch (c) Bkd, Doug Rowe Bkd(replaced by Sam Wilson 67), Ben Kempton, Sub not used; Jack McCarthy.