BY Sandra Brobbey – sports reporter
DULWICH Hamlet were narrowly beaten by Bognor Regis in an aggressively contested encounter in south London on Saturday.
Despite a gutsy defensive display, capped by club captain Terrell Forbes’ excellent diving headed goal line clearance, Hamlet were undone by a solitary 49th minute strike. It was the first home league defeat of the season for Gavin Rose’s side.
Atmosphere was raucous on a bright, chilly afternoon at Champion Hill, with a progressive dub techno mix pumping out of the stadium’s speakers at half time. Free tickets for students boosted crowd numbers with 1,065 fans attending.
The match coincided with the Pink and Blues becoming the first Non-League club to publically back Rainbow Laces, a national campaign against homophobia. An anti-homophobia banner was unfurled before kick-off and Hamlet players donned multi-coloured laces.
As both sides battled to dominate the midfield, neither were able to retain possession for long spells in the early period of the first half.
The game eventually settled towards the end of the half as long ball passes were swapped for shorter, neater exchanges.
Hamlet’s attackers made a few mildly threatening forays into the Bognor Regis box. Striker Shawn McCoulsky had a shot parried away by Rocks keeper Chris Winterton. Ethan Pinnock saw his attempted header glance over the bar shortly before half time.
The home side began the second half energetically for a brief spell. A mazy Kershaney Samuels run drew a quick reaction from Winterton who came out to block Samuels’ shot.
Deadlock was broken nine minutes into the second half when a dangerous cross fell into the path of Doug Tuck. A firm low drive by the Bognor midfielder gave his side the lead.
The Rocks came close to adding a second after a short period of possession following the goal. Dulwich keeper Oshane Brown’s wayward clearance fell to Harvey Whyte, but the midfielder was unable to capitalise.
Hamlet pushed for a late equaliser, but were denied by some resolute goalkeeping from Winterton. Ineffective crosses from the Dulwich flanks hampered late charges into Bognor’s box. The game finished one-nil in the 94th minute.
More on Dulwich Hamlet at their official website.
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