Blue Square South
Monday 17 August 2009 - Westleigh Park - kick off 7.45pm
||Puddy, Jombati (Perrott 68), Rollo (c), Coupe, Holland, Browning (Mohamed 59), Simpson, Connolly, Edwards (Cornwall 84),
Badman, Hogg. subs not used: Jones, Gwinnett.
|man of the match:
||Badman (75), Edwards (pen 77)
||Hogg (36), Edwards (73), Coupe (tbc)
|league position: 6th
||next match: Hampton & Rich (H)
Report taken from
As Bath City manager Adie Britton readily confessed this was a match that had everything – except, in the end, a victory for his side.
After going in front late in the game through Mark Badman and a Darren Edwards penalty the visitors eventually had to settle for a draw in front of a 1,181-strong crowd as wily fox Manny Williams equalised for the unbeaten Hawks with a minute to go.
City went into the match with Edwards playing as the lone forward and Lewis Hogg and Marcus Browning being recalled to a five-man midfield at the expense of Gethin Jones and Mike Perrott.
If defence was the order of the day it was a strategy that was blown apart as early as the seventh minute. A Havant cross was flicked on by Steve Walker to former Woking player Williams – a summer signing target for Britton – and he slotted the ball under Chris Holland and past Will Puddy in the City goal.
Just six minutes later Puddy, playing with a groin strain, kept City in the match. A fine move that started with Newton on the right, via Paul Hinshelwood in the centre found Wes Fogden on the left. His shot brought out a fine diving save from the youthful City keeper.
At that point it might have been expected that the Hawks would pour forward in numbers yet somehow City managed to stem the tide and as the half wore on increasingly began to pressurise the home defence.
City’s best spell of the half came just before the interval.
First, Adam Connolly sent curving shot narrowly wide of keeper Aaron Howes’ left-hand post. Then, with the half-time whistle imminent, a Hogg shot was turned wide by Howe.
From the resulting corner Chris Holland rose unmarked in the box but could only head over the crossbar as City’s first real chances evaporated.
The second half began like much of the first half with the play increasingly compressed in the centre of the park and City forcing the home side into a succession of errors, yet lacking that final punch up front.
That all changed on 77 minutes when Edwards put in a stinging cross for Badman to glance home.
Before the Hawks could even gather their breath City were at them again. This time it was substitute Mike Perrott who, after racing into the box, was upended by home defender Jay Gasson. Edwards stepped up and powerfully converted the penalty for his third goal of the season.
City should have wrapped up the points two minutes later. A Hogg free-kick was headed back across the area but Edwards’ shot cannoned back off an upright.
It was the let off the home side needed. Twice in the next five minutes they went close through Fogden and Shaun Wilkinson but with referee Carl Brook looking at his watch a ball played forward down the left found the excellent Williams, who, running on expertly, slotted his shot past a diving Puddy.
The only down side for City was three yellow cards, one each for Hogg, Edwards and Perrott, although Havant exceed them with five in a match that was keenly contested but scarcely deserving of so many bookings.