Alton win plenty of friends with sporting gesture

Friday 8th April 2022 6:00 am
Action from an Alton match earlier this season. Photo by Kieran Cox Photography
(Photo by Kieran Cox Photography. Use for Farnham Herald, Alton Herald, Bordon Herald, Haslemere Herald, Liphook Herald, Petersfield Post only. )

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Hamble Club 2 Alton 3 (abandoned after 72 minutes): ALTON’s act of supreme sportsmanship was forgotten as the Wessex League Premier Division match was abandoned when a home player was badly injured.

The Brewers went 2-1 ahead in the second half when the home goalkeeper went to clear from his box but managed only to give the ball to Jack Fowler, who was wide left and 40 yards from goal.

With the keeper laid out on the ground, Fowler instinctively and accurately fired the ball into the empty net.

When it became apparent that in clearing the ball the keeper had hurt himself, and was therefore in no position to defend the goal, manager Kev Adair spoke to the home team’s bench and then instructed his own team to allow the home side to walk in the equaliser straight from the restart.

The act of sportsmanship resulted in a standing ovation from everyone in the ground.

But after 72 minutes the game was ended when a Hamble player fell awkwardly after a challenge and suffered a head injury that required an ambulance and hospital treatment.

It was a shame as the game had been a good advert for the league and had been played in fine spirit. The Brewers had fallen behind on 11 minutes but Luke Perkins levelled when he broke clear and deftly chipped the keeper from 20 yards.

Alton enjoyed territorial advantage without creating clear chances, but after the tit-for-tat goals they finally went ahead in the 55th minute when Rob Carr received the ball on the right, stepped inside and his left-foot shot took a slight deflection on its way into the net.

Alton’s director of football Dave Hawtin said: “It was a decent game in difficult conditions, played in a respectful and sportsmanlike manner.

“We heard that evening that the young player who was injured had been treated in hospital and released – and that’s what really matters.”

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