AFC Portchester 3, Cowes Sports 1

COWES Sports travelled across the Solent to take on AFC Portchester yesterday evening (Tuesday) for the Wessex League Cup tie.

With keepers Ed Hatt and Ben Gearing unavailable for the match, veteran keeper coach Dave Thurman stepped into the number one shirt and James Wykes returned from suspension.

It was the Isle of Wight side that fashioned the first chance of the game in the eight minute when a cross from the left was headed back by Callum Chase to James Wykes who volleyed over the bar from 20 yards.

The home side then took the lead with their first attack in the tenth minute.

Neither side had another shot on goal until Gareth Bricknell took a free kick in the 35th minute which was cleared for a corner by a home defender.

The Yachtmen's skipper shot from the left corner towards the near post. Their defender made a poor attempt to clear sending the ball only up in the air to Ashley Brett who chested the ball down before firing past the Porchester keeper and into the home goal for the equaliser.

Watch below:

Shortly before the break, the home side were reduced to ten — for the third time in four games at their ground — when Sean Wain was yellow carded for a second time for fouling James Wykes.

From the resulting free kick, the ball bounced off the right post as the Yachtsmen came close to taking the lead.

The second half got off to fairly even start until, in the 68th minute, Portchester's Simmonds was given time and space on the edge of the Cowes box to fire the ball into the top corner to give the home side the lead.

The hosts that were now on the front foot and were rewarded with a third goal when a speculative shot from 30 yards caught Thurman unsighted and the ball found the corner of the goal.

Cowes had a chance at a second goal when Gareth Bricknell fed Jez Conway some 35yards from goal, he in turn clipped the ball over a defender for Dominic Sexton too run onto before his shot was well saved by Ryan Young.

James Wykes then met a cross from the left by Michael McEnery, but sent his header just wide of the far post. Despite their best efforts, Cowes could not find the net as they bowed out of the League Cup after a brave fight.

Cowes Sports: Thurman, White, Sexton, Brett, Broomfield, Allen, Chase, Jarvis, Conway, Bricknell, Wykes. Subs: Bryan, Gardner, McEnery, Kirby.