Frustration for Bognor as possession fails to bring win over Corinthian - report and post-match interview
Bognor were held to a 1-1 draw by Corinthian Casuals in a game they dominated.
The Rocks failed to convert their workrate into clear-cut chances. Despite James Crane’s wonder strike to salvage a point, they lacked in the final third as the hosts were content to get 11 men behind the ball throughout the game.
Keaton Wood returned to the team as Tommy Leigh and Mason Walsh moved to the bench.
A swift early cross from the left by Casuals' Juevan Spencer bounced through the area and wide with Robert Paratore in pursuit. Harvey Whyte made a good run but his incisive pass was cut out in response.
A great ball through from Doug Tuck found Bradley Lethbridge but he was offside. A diagonal ball from Jake Flannigan to Lethbridge couldn’t be controlled by the young forward.
Crane passed to Lethbridge, who was causing a lot of problems for the hosts in the early going, but he was closed down and the ball rolled out for a goal kick. Casuals' Andrew Mills went down holding his right leg and had to receive treatment on 19 minutes. Tuck found Crane on the left and his cross was searching for Dan Smith but a defender headed it out.
Smith's effort from just outside the box was well saved by Daniel Bracken on 23 minutes. Smith was blocked with another effort and at the other end Bradley Wilson passed to Spencer, but his cross was headed out again.
Lethbridge hit one fiercely from the edge of the box but straight at Bracken who punched it back out again. Mills was not fit to return and was replaced by Gabriel Odunaike on 27 minutes. Lethbridge picked out Whyte with a long diagonal ball but the cross from him was just too much for Smith.
Matt Casey passed out wide to Harry Kavanagh but the cross was poor, flying over the goal on 30 minutes. Hakeem Adelekun ran through to pass inside to Oliver Stitch but the offside flag was up.
Kavanagh got the ball across the face of goal and Crane was at the back post and hit it first time low at goal but it was blocked. Crane was the provider again with a high looping cross which was too high for Smith.
Lethbridge cut inside but drove a shot low and straight at Bracken. Kavanagh an cut inside on to his left foot before blasting it high and wide on 41 minutes.
Tuck and Kavanagh set up Smith for an opening but Bracken pushed it away. Bognor conceded on 44 minutes straight from a free-kick, Wood getting a head to it as it flew into the net to give Casuals an unlikely lead through Bradley Wilson.
Lethbridge hit a free-kick high into the area which Bracken punched clear. Then a short corner by Tuck to Smith was nodded down and across goal and it bounced off a defender before flying into Bracken's arms just before half-time.
Robbie Blake was visibly angry at his side's first-half performance during the break as he found his side behind even though the Rocks dominated possession. HT 1-0
Smith sped through before passing to Lethbridge, who squared it across the area along the deck - but Whyte missed it. Lethbridge beat his man before belting the ball high over the bar from outside the box moments later.
Benjamin Checklit got a cross in from the left and Wood headed it out. Kavanagh was replaced by Leigh on 50 minutes for Bognor.
Cook and Casey thwarted Odunaike before Lethbridge worked his way into the Casuals area before hitting it low across the area and it seemed to bounce up on to a defender’s hand - but the referee ignored the claims for a penalty.
Casey came off for Walsh on 57 minutes for Bognor. Walsh got involved when he cut across the defence using his pace but his final strike was poor. Walsh burst through on the left and Wilson was booked on 61 minutes for a late challenge on him. Leigh's free-kick fell to Crane but his glancing header failed to trouble the keeper and Smith missed the loose ball at the back post.
It was going to take something magical to get Bognor back in to this, and it was a special goal by Crane that got them level - the stalwart hitting one from 25 yards out on the left to beat Bracken after patient build-up play.
Checklit was replaced by Warren Sadare-Morgan on 74 minutes before Leigh's curling free-kick was glanced wide by Cook. Whyte dug out a cross on 78 minutes and Crane was rushing in at the back post but a defender got in the way.
Paratore came off for Nathaniel Pinney for the hosts and Arron Hopkinson replaced Lethbridge for Bognor on 83 minutes. Tuck found Walsh wide on the left but he cut inside before lashing another strike well wide.
Walsh crossed but it was deflected away from Hopkinson, then Crane was blocked with another effort. Walsh curled in a cross but Smith couldn’t get it. Flannigan went down holding his left shoulder.
Tuck combined with Hopkinson whose crosswas headed over by Leigh. Flannigan sliced an effort wide. Smith was pushed to ground, winning Bognor a free-kick. Leigh spun the ball in but Smith glanced his header into the grateful arms of Bracken.
In stoppage time Cook made terrific headway into the box, beating two men, but could only slide his low effort wide with the keeper stranded.
Bognor host Kingstonian this Saturday at Nyewood Lane.
Rocks: Tangara, Kavanagh (Leigh 50), Crane, Tuck, Cook, Wood, Whyte, Casey (Walsh 57), Smith, Flannigan, Lethbridge (Hopkinson 83)
Subs not used: Mendoza, Wakley.
Attendance – 242