Royston Town 3 Tring Athletic 2
AN under-strength Tring Athletic side were left bemoaning a couple of key refereeing decisions as they slipped to a 3-2 defeat at the hands of high-flying Royston Town.
Having taken a 2-0 lead, Athletic were pegged back to 2-2, but thought they had found a third goal courtesy of Matt Jarvis with 17 minutes left to play.
The match officials, though, deemed that his effort had not crossed the line and Town took the lead almost immediately as they broke away and were awarded a penalty, much to the dismay of the Athetic players.
Despite the loss, however, Tring will take heart from the performance which could so easily have earned them all thee points against a strong Royston side.
Royston made a bright start to the game and forced Tring onto the back foot with Tom Malins thwarted on two occasions by Athletic keeper Ben Clarke.
It was visitors Tring, though, who broke the deadlock against the run of play in the 29th minute.
Captain Graham Hall, fresh from delivering his own baby, had double reason to celebrate as he headed home from David Whicker’s pin-point cross to put his side 1-0 up.
Royston were soon given the chance to get back on level terms from the spot after a trip in the area, but Athletic were given a reprieve as Ryan Lockett put his effort wide.
The home side continued to press for an equaliser, but it was Tring who struck again to double their lead courtesy of a Stewart King strike.
Hall unleashed a rocket of an effort which forced Town keeper Jorden Gibson into a superb stop, and King picked up the loose ball before firing a fine effort into the bottom corner of the net.
Within five minutes, however, the hosts had halved the deficit through Kaan Fehmi, before the Royston man added his second to restore parity.
To their credit, Tring battled back bravely and thought they had regained the lead through Jarvis, but it was not to be for Julian Robinson’s side and Fehmi completed his hat-trick from the spot to earn the points for Royston.