With some key Hillians unavailable for this match, Jay Lovett used this chance to run his eye one more time over his squad before the season opener next weekend. Carshalton started the brighter and they signalled their intent early with a quick effort on Taylor Seymour’s goal which didn’t trouble him. The goalkeeper was called into action soon though, pushing away a decent Robins effort. Carshalton are one of the stronger teams in the Isthmian Premier and their artificial pitch allows for some lovely football, they showcased this when an excellent move down the right culminated in cross to the far post where a Carshalton man volleyed straight at Seymour. Shots were reigning in on the Hill goal, a more speculative effort gave the Hill stopper no cause for concern. The Hillians, as they have been all pre-season, were looking to play out from the back but on this occasion they were caught out and Carshalton nearly capitalised but curled their effort inches over from 20 yards. With half-time looming, the very busy Seymour was forced to make his best saves of the half, denying a Robin not once but twice with a tremendous double save.
The second half carried on the same trend as the first, with Carshalton being denied by Seymour! Another sharp double save kept the scores level and the hosts at bay. Without creating many chances, Burgess Hill were still very much in the game and were looking for the opener themselves, and it almost came in the 67th minute when a corner was only cleared to Marvin Hamilton who’s crisp strike whistled just over the crossbar. Carshalton came close twice in quick succession from corners, both times through the giant centre half Jordan Cheadle. First, he rose highest at the back post but couldn’t direct his header on target and moments later a corner found its way to the imposing colossus but with the goal gaping he put his effort wide. With the clock ticking towards the 90, Carshalton grabbed the winner. A pinball in the area ricochet off Bobby Price and past a helpless Seymour to seal victory for the Robins and condemn a second pre-season defeat onto the battling Hillians.
All focus turns towards the real stuff as we head to Kent next Saturday to play Ashford United in our 2021/2022 curtain raiser!