Rottingdean 1 - 1 Sidlesham
Hard fought point after going down to 10 men
Sidlesham travelled along the coast to Rottingdean on Saturday, in testing conditions with a swirling wind and being down to 10 men for most of the second half came away with a creditable draw.
The game was a scrappy affair with the wind playing a major part and when the teams did get the ball down and play the bumpy pitch didn't help their cause, making free flowing football hard at the best of times. Chances were at a premium in the first half and Tom Bayley went close for Sidlesham when he got free in the box forcing the home keeper into a good save. The home side were making things difficult and their forwards were causing the Sidlesham defence a problem with their direct running and continued hard work, a team that never gives up.
Connor Kelly in the Sidlesham goal did well when the home side forced a number of corners, but with assured handling collected them from under the crossbar a number of times. Sidlesham did find themselves a goal down though when a free kick from their striker scored with a tremendous strike, although Kelly went full stretch he couldn't manage to keep the ball out. Sidlesham pushed forward and tried to get a equaliser but they found the Rottingdean defence and midfield in no mood to concede.
The second half began and with the wind behind their backs Sidlesham attacked at will forcing a number of free kicks and corners but they couldn't force an equaliser. Just as they were getting into their stride they were reduced to 10 men when Joe Leggatt was adjudged to have pulled their forward down when slipping to clear an attack. This galvanised the away side and wave after wave they pushed forward looking for a chance on goal and it wasn't long before they got one with Callum Dowdell going close and then a good run by Callum Litterick but he misplaced his shot wide. This didn't stop the away side and they kept going with the occasional break away from the home side but they didn't really threaten the Sidlesham goal.
Back came Sidlesham again and the ball was played into Bayley in the box who turned his man and fired a great strike past the home keeper. Sidlesham kept the pressure up looking for the winner but couldn't quite force the ball home. Great credit to them though after going down to 10 men and gaining a vital point, with this being their 5th away game on the bounce the side deserve great credit for their desire not to lose.
This Tuesday sees them travel to Loxwood FC for theIR league cup semi final 7.45pm KO vs Jarvis Brook and next Saturday sees them on their travels again in the league to Cowfold FC, KO 2pm.