St Newlyn East came into this tough fixture against last season's champions Foxhole looking to get back to winning ways but were dealt a blow before kick-off with manager Martin Grigg unable to be at the game through illness and the Saints were on the back foot from the start as Foxhole started fast and forcing Newlyn deep with their high-pressing three man front line.
In the opening 3 minutes home ‘keeper Prentice was called into action 3 times to save from strong shots as the visitors pushed forwards. Newlyn fought back well after these early scares, forcing the visiting ‘keeper Prynn to fumble and clear a shot after 7 minutes, save a long low drive by Mugford on 10, and concede 2 quick corners.
Unfortunately, the Saints were undone by a basic error on 17 minutes when Prentice chose a poor short goal kick to Jadon Gotthardt who lost control of the ball to Ben Bould who calmly slotted home for the visitors to take the lead.
Just a minute later and Ross London conceded a soft free kick after barely touching his marker who screamed in agony to force the official to produce a card which was to prove very costly later in the game. The official continued to allow the visitors to slide in recklessly without cautions and their aggressive tactics were affecting the home play. Prentice saved the home side again on 21 minutes and the visitors’ then saw Levi Kerrigan booked a minute later after a robust challenge.
On the half-hour Ross London forced a corner after a close, looping shot and it appeared Newlyn were holding the visitors well until another sloppy mistake saw a poor attempted clearance latched on by the alert Bould who drove home past Prentice on 33 minutes for a two goal lead to Foxhole.
It was Newlyn that finished the half better with a consistent run of attacks and chances either wide or well saved, successive corners and nice open play – all without a return though as the visitors visibly tired.
A good start to the second half saw frustration from the visitors bench and a good deal of leniency from the match official. An innocuous challenge by Ross London on 59 minutes appeared to have been let go by the ref, until the visitors crowded him, calling loudly for a card and shouting that London had already been booked. The official duly changed his mind and booked London as Foxhole demanded reducing the Saints were down to ten men. A furious crowd reaction was repeated on the touchline and the official then also dismissed a member of the home dugout again following calls from the visitors.
Arguably the Saints performed even better down to 10 men and continually pushed for some return. Their chances were very few but their pressure saw two Foxhole players booked in the remainder of the game as the home side amassed some degree of pressure but as they became increasingly stretched - pushing to reduce the arrears, Foxhole latched onto a loose ball and beat the tiring home defence to score a third to secure the result with 10 minutes to go.
Newlyn were obviously and justifiably very frustrated at the end of the game with the inconsistency shown by the match official and felt he penalised them whilst letting their opponents go unpunished for identical challenges and offences.
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