New U’s boss suffers first loss

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Sean Ray suffered his first defeat as Hastings United player/manager today (Saturday).

United’s four-match winning run came to an end with a slightly unfortunate 2-0 loss at home to Cray Wanderers in the Ryman Football League Premier Division.

Fielding the same starting line-up as in the previous two league games against Horsham and Aveley, United had the best chance of the first half-hour when Kenny Pogue, pictured, was denied by the away goalkeeper.

United stopper Lloyd Anderson gifted Cray a 33rd minute lead as he failed to keep out a half-hit shot by Lewis Perkins, one of three former U’s players in the Wanderers squad.

Jamie Crellin and Pogue had chances to equalise for United as the game entered the closing 15 minutes, but after Anderson made a good save from Tommy Whitnell, substitute Jack Clark sealed Cray’s victory in added time.

New signing Joe Barham made a lively debut as a substitute for Jordan Woodley, whose frustration came out when he kicked a bag of warm-up balls beside the home dug-out as he left the field.

A full report and the thoughts of Ray will appear in Friday’s Hastings Observer.

Hastings (4-3-3): Anderson; Dixon, Ray, Jirbandey, Sutton; Crellin, Carey, Thomson; Woodley (Barham 70), Pogue, Attwood. Subs not used: Bolwell, Whitehead, Manning, Stapley.