Winchester City 3 Bristol Manor Farm 2

Manor Farm equalised twice but came away with nothing as a very poor refereeing display marred an entertaining night away in Winchester.

Farm’s evening of sloppy defensive work began in the first minute, losing the ball from their own throw and cut wide open, allowing Ollie Palmer to get free down the left and cooly put the hosts ahead. Farm went for an immediate reply and nearly got one after 5 minutes, a well worked cross field move led to Marcus Day trickery before his shot was saved by Pryce and Dan Spencer’s rebound was well blocked. Farm were giving a debut to defender Sam Boulton and he won a flick from centre back partner Steve Kingdon’s long throw which could easily have dropped in at the back post. Farm would get their equaliser on the half hour, Boulton again winning a header well and he was adjudged to be pushed and a penalty was awarded. Skipper Jamie Adams calmly converted to level things up. Farm then had two incredible tackles to thank for going into the break level, first Boulton slid in last ditch to stop a certain goal before Kingdon slid in to block just as Balmer was about to get his second.

The second half’s early stages were dominated by Farm but they were caught cold on the break again. After a suspect looking backpass went unnoticed, Winchester broke in numbers and right back Josh McCormick found himself with acres of space to fire in low and find the far corner. Farm battled back in, almost levelling when another dangerous long throw dropped to Jamie Turner who swivelled and fired at goal but it was beaten away by Pryce. Farm would level just after the hour, another superbly worked move led to Bryant firing at goal and despite being repelled by Pryce again, Spencer followed in to level the game for a second time. Both teams were looking to win it, Marcus Day with more dancing footwork but his shot dragged wide. Ultimately it was another poor goal to concede that snatched the points for the home side, one ball over the top found Balmer who got in between Turner and Rees before chopping inside and smashing his finish. Farm would push for a share of the spoils but the closest they came was through Adams who got a toe to a late low cross but could only poke wide.