A missed Matt Crabb penalty saw Eastbourne Town’s recent good run of form come to an end on Saturday as they tasted defeat for the first time since early January.
A turn around in form, which had seen Danny Bloor’s side lose just once in their last ten games, had seen Town rise to 12th in the table but they faced a touch challenge against a Ramsgate side who themselves had won three of their last four games.
After postponements throughout the winter period, the games are coming thick and fast for Town and boss Bloor made two changes ahead of Eastbourne’s third game in a week.
Luke Denton came in at right back to replace Adam Davidson and winger Richard Greenfield was recalled to the side in place of John Lansdale who dropped to the bench.
In a scrappy first half, where chances were at a premium, both goalkeepers had little to do. The only goalmouth action came when Town skipper Ben Austin forced Ramsgate keeper Daren Hawkes into a smart save with a stooping header at the far post, after just nine minutes and then Josh Pelling, in the home goal, pulled off a strong one handed save to deny Ian Pulman from opening the scoring.
Ten minutes into the second half Town should have gone ahead from the penalty spot after Curtis Robinson was penalised for handball as he tried to clear the ball. However the resulting penalty from Crabb struck the base of the post and his follow up was then ruled out as no other player had touched the ball. That was to be Crabb’s last involvement in the game as just minutes later he limped off after a heavy challenge.
The home side were then made to pay for failing to convert the spot kick with just ten minutes to go. Town were unable to clear a goalmouth scramble and the ball eventually fell to Ben Laslett who smashed the ball high into the roof of the net, giving Pelling no chance.
Town pressed for an equaliser but failed to create any clear cut chances against a solid Ramsgate side who have lost just twice on their travels all season and when claims for a second penalty late in the game fell on deaf ears the home side were condemned to a sixth home defeat of the season. Eastbourne’s attention will now turn to the Sussex Senior Cup as Danny Bloor’s side travel to Loxwood on Tuesday looking to secure a Quarter Final tie against East Preston.
Town: Pelling, Denton , Rogers, Elliott, Austin, Strevett, Treleaven, Greenfield,(Archibald), Curd Aldred, (Bolwell) Crabb (Lansdale). Att: 187