Alan Turvey Trophy
Burgess Hill Town 2 – 0 Horsham
Horsham went out of the Alan Turvey Trophy after losing 2-0 to Premier League Burgess Hill Town on Tuesday night. However, if the Hornets had not gone down to 10 men at 1-0, when starting to get back into it, then things may have turned out differently.
Horsham started with two ex Hillians in the side, Scott Kirkwood and George Branford, and were put under pressure from the kick off by their higher league opposition. Josh Pelling was called into action in the early stages saving well from Curtis Gayler and Dan Thompson as Town pushed forward. At the other end on a rare attack Terry Dodd had a header well saved by Josh James in the Hillians goal. The inevitable, and deserved, opening goal for the hosts came in the 23rd minute when after some indifferent Hornets defending Tadley Bromage connected with Thompson’s low cross to beat Pelling. For the remainder of the half Town continued to boss the play however James was forced into a couple of stops from deflected Horsham efforts and Branford fired wide when he should have at least hit the target.
Town’s manager Ian Chapman must have not been happy with the slender lead as his side came out and laid siege to the Horsham goal straight from the restart. As the half went on and the hosts had not increased their lead Horsham sensed that there was something to be had from the match and stated to pose more of a threat and have more of the ball. In an attempt to get an equaliser Dom Di Paola sent on midfielder Lewis Hyde for defender Alex Duncan but the move backfired when after being on the pitch for only a few minutes Hyde was shown a straight red card for denying Lee Harding a clear goal scoring opportunity. After that it was a bridge too far for Horsham and Town again took control of the game, wrapping things up with 4 minutes remaining when Curtis Gayler took advantage of more hesitant defending before curling a shot past Pelling.
The priority for Horsham is undoubtedly to consolidate their Ryman League status so this defeat will not cause manager Di Paola too many worries. On a big positive point Tony Nwachukwu again came on as a substitute and again showed what an asset he is. Nwachukwu will, when fully fit, be a big part in Horsham achieving the target of keeping their Ryman League status.
Dave Smith – Sports Editor