Andover 2 – 2 Whitchurch
BY MATCH REPORTER: GRAHAM COUSINS
Andover Town continued to make progress in this season’s invitation cup but local rivals Whitchurch did not make it easy for them.
Played behind closed doors, both teams observed a minutes silence before the match got underway and with less than five minutes played the visitors created the first chance of the game but Tom Hogan’s effort was well saved by Dease Kerrison at the expense of a corner.
Andover’s opening chance fell to Josh Bertie whose twenty five yarder flew inches wide of the post. Their next opportunity provided the first goal as Zac Hine fired in from the edge of the area although it appeared to take a slight deflection.
Andover’s advantage lasted little more than three minutes. Kerrison came out to challenge Declan Shuttleworth for a high ball and it was the Whitchurch captain who won and put away the equaliser.
There were further chances at both ends but it was the visitors who claimed the bragging rights at the interval.
For the second period Andover made some tactical changes but they were unable to prevent Whitchurch scoring their second goal.
Regretfully this correspondent’s attention was distracted at the time and was unable to record the build-up or the name of the scorer.
If the visitors were the better side during the first half Andover were proving to be the more dominant in the second period.
They now looked the most likely to score and so proved just on the hour mark.After a neat move the indefatigable Brendon Holmes crossed a perfect ball to find Bertie in space and the placing of the subsequent header was perfect.
Another header by Gary Thorne almost brought a third Andover goal and the referee got it right when waving away a penalty appeal by Andover. Whitchurch continued to defend deep and in numbers, and it arguably left Andover needing at least a win from the final two games to progress into the knockout stage of the competition.