Attendance – 94
A rare mid week League fixture at Westwood park saw Hamble Club travel to the Island, sitting in fourth place in the table and would surely be a tough test for the Yachtsmen.
Only change from Saturdays impressive performance at Sholing was in goal as Ed Hatt replaced the unavailable Ben Gearing. Two changes to the bench saw Connor Furmidge and Sam Kirby replace Aiden White and Ryan Gardner.
Cowes created the first chance after 5 minutes as James Wykes fired over the bar from 30 yards. Hamble began to take control from their after, a throw from in front of the clubhouse was only cleared to James Goodey whose first time shot went wide of the Cowes goal. Coby Wilson was next to try his luck with a powerful effort from 30 yards that had Ed Hatt at full stretch to push the ball over the crossbar for a corner, from which a bit of desperation in the home defence before eventually the ball was cleared. It came as no surprise when in the 18th minute the visitors took the lead. A cross from the Cowes left clipped off the head of Aidan Bryan but fell to RICHARD BRIDLE to the right of the far post, he controlled the ball before firing past Ed Hatt into the roof of the net. James Goodey then had another chance at goal but again could not hit the target. With the home team struggling to find any sort of rhythm Hamble continued to press forward. A corner from the right was headed over by Liam Newton before another long range shot was straight at the Cowes number one who saved comfortably. A ball into the Cowes box caused problems in the 29th minute, Ed Hatt saved the first effort before a second shot was blocked by a home defender before finally the ball was buried into the goal by JOHN COLE too double the lead. A third goal was nearly added in the 39th minute when a inswinging corner from the right was scrambled off the line by Ed Hatt. Cowes were a little lucky to be only two behind at the break meaning the next goal would be vital.
Only three minutes into the second half and the Yachtsmen found themselves three behind as COBY WILSON turned his marker on the left edge of the box before curling the ball into the top right corner of the Cowes goal for a stunning goal. Ten minutes later and a clash of heads in front of the stand saw Conor White sustain a cut above his left eye that needed hospital treatment, he was replaced by Sam Kirby. At the same time Connor Furmidge came on for Jacob Jarvis as the home side tried to find a way back into the game. Cowes thought they should have been given that opportunity in the 59th minute when Gareth Bricknell appeared to be fouled inside their area, but Referee Anthony Cross ruled the foul was a centimetre outside the box and gave a free kick which Jez Conway fired straight at Rory Anderson in the visitors goal. Hamble replaced Doug Rowe with Nathan Lynch for the final 25 minutes. Jez Conway then fired inches wide of the Hamble goal before Nathan Lynch should have added a fourth but headed against the top of the crossbar and out for a goal kick. Charlie Wagstaff came off for Alex Blake for the visitors whilst Jez Conway made way for Daniel Pearson. Fellow sub Connor Furmidge then shot straight at Rory Anderson before the Cowes forward should have pulled one back for the Islanders when he met a Dan Pearson cross from the left but fired over the bar from six yards in what proved to be the final chance of the game.
A disappointing result and performance by the Island side who at times looked as though they did not know or understand the system they were playing. Lets hope that club captain John McKie will return soon as he seems to be the only goal threat at present. Plenty of hard work on show but a lack of composure in front of goal
Referee:- ANTHONY CROSS Assistants- Alistair Taylor + Andy Jones
Edward Hatt, Conor White, Dominic Sexton, Aidan Bryan, Ashley Brett, Jack Broomfield, Callum Chase, Jacob Jarvis, Jez Conway, Gareth Bricknell (c), James Wykes
Used Subs; Sam Kirby(Conor White) 58, Connor Furmidge(Jacob Jarvis) 58, Daniel Pearson(Jez Conway) 80
Unused Subs; Charlie Allen + Dave Thurman g/k
PS: Conor White received seven stiches to the injury he picked up in the clash of heads.