Heath gain their first point of the season
In their second match of the season, their first at Hanbury Stadium, Haywards Heath hosted fellow
Sussex side Lancing on a Tuesday night.
The game began quickly and within five minutes Heath had a corner; following a fantastic delivery by Alex Laing, defender Dean Gunner rose above the Lancers defenders but his header went over the bar.
Ten minutes in The Blues had their second goal of the season. Ahmed Abdulla clipped a fine ball to the back post before striker Tom Collins headed it down for Tom Cadman to head home from close range.
Three minutes later they doubled their lead, Ibrahim Jalloh fed a pinpoint pass through the legs of
Lancing defender Ben Hack to set Tom Collins free – he slid in to poke the ball past Lancing’s keeper 18 yards out.
Three bookings and a Lancing goal disallowed for offside saw Heath’s fantastic first half come to a close. The second began, and with Lancing with all to gain scored ten minutes into the half; Lancers number nine the highest riser to head the ball past Billy Collings giving a way back into
the game for the yellows.
It was a mere two minutes before the Blues showed their quality again, the stellar Jalloh breezed past two men, the second left a trailing foot to give away a Blues’ penalty. Heath presented a chance to regain their two goal lead. Tom Collins hit the penalty hard and low to the keeper’s
right but was saved – pushed well away from any follow-up effort.
An inspired second-half performance from Lancing keeper Conor Manderson kept his side in the game with a string of saves; the most notable was a lobbed shot from Tom Collins where Manderson backpedalled towards his goal to reach the underside of the crossbar and stop the shot.
Unfortunately, the Blues would rue their missed opportunities, as another corner fell in the right place for defender Ashley Mutongerwa to toe-poke it into the net and pull Lancing level.
The challenge for the Heath to gain maximum points then became harder, as defender Marc Lida
Gballou saw a straight red card for a shoulder barge, but in truth shouldn’t have been even a booking. The resulting free-kick was saved brilliantly by Billy Collings.
This is a result which the Blues will feel disappointed about, despite their brilliant first-half performance
and fantastic chances in the second, and one which the Lancers probably would have taken at halftime.