First Team
Velocity Trophy Round 1 Tue 27 September Oaklands Park
Chichester City
  • Rowlatt (40')
  • Pritchard (51')
Burgess Hill Town
  • Duah-Kessie (74')

All the Hillians do currently is play cup matches and this trend carried on last night as they travelled to Chichester City in the Velocity Trophy.

The Hillians made 8 changes to this encounter whereas the hosts made 6 and it was definitely the home team who settled the quickest on a bitter night in West Sussex. City dominated the ball for the opening 15 minutes but it was actually the Hillians who had the first attempt on target. Jay Lovett gave a debut to new signing Sam Remfry and he was teed up on the edge of the box by Charlie Pitcher and it forced Kieran Magee into the first save of the evening. That started a spree of chances and it was the hosts turn next to go close. Harry Pollard sliced a clearance and that set Chichester in on goal but Enos Duah stood tall and made a cracking save with his feet to keep the scores level. Most of the Hills attacking threat was coming through the 2 Charlie’s and they combined again in the 26th minute. A cross in from Charlie Kelly found namesake Charlie Pitcher, he then laid it off to Ben Delisle but he was soon crowded out by a swarm of City defenders in a packed penalty area and his eventual shot was blocked. Another Hill chance came when Reggie Ward marauded forward from left back and made his way to the edge of the box but once again, Kieran Magee was up to it, saving low down to deny the young fullback.  Burgess Hill are renowned for always having very good keepers and Enos Duah is no exception. He made a brilliant double save in the 33rd minute to thwart and frustrate a Chichester team who were just starting to knock on the door. Unfortunately for the Hillians, in the 40th minute, that knocking on the door absolutely blew it off it’s hinges.  It all came from a short corner which found Lloyd Rowlatt, he had time to take a touch and steady himself and fire his effort low, through the crowd of players in the box and into the bottom corner to give the hosts the lead.

HT: 1-0.

Unfortunately for Hill, the last chance  before HT and the first chance after HT, resulted in a goal. There wasn’t a lot the Hill could do about this one, a defence splitting pass from Joe Clarke set Ethan Pritchard in one on one and the City forward comfortably slotted past the helpless Duah. Conceding at this point in the match really knocked the stuffing out of Hill, Sam Remfry tried to spark a comeback but his 25 yarder was comfortable for Kieran Magee. Likewise, Brad Santos did well from fullback to bring the ball forward, beat a couple of men and work a shooting chance but he fired wide. With the game seemingly winding down to a comfortable conclusion, Jeff Duah-Kessie had other ideas. It was a brilliant through ball from substitute JJ Minty to find Jeff but he had so much work to do, he was on the left hand side of the box and running out of room but he smashed an effort first time, hard and low with his left foot, across Kieran Magee to spark the Hill comeback to life. There’s always one final chance and so it proved for Hill, substitute Hayden Skerry beat his man on the right hand side of the box and unleashed a fierce drive which cannoned back off the underside of the crossbar but cruelly for Hill, not over the goal line.

FT: 2-1.

A tough end to a spirited last 15 minutes but Chichester were worthy winners on the night and our attention now turns to League and FA Trophy matters.

Next up for those Hillians it’s finally a return to Isthmian League action at the More Than Tyres Stadium as we welcome East Grinstead Town to paradise.