Tring Athletic’s excellent unbeaten start to the season came to a halt on a hot afternoon at old rivals Oxhey Jets as Julian Robinson’s side went down 1-0.
The only goal came in the 73rd minute through skipper Simeon Armstrong; just five minutes after Athletic had missed a penalty
Tring were forced into making two changes from the midweek game as Lee Stobbs was unavailable and Dave O’Connor was injured. Athletic also started the game with leading scorer Chris Vardy carrying a injury.
The Tring defenders and keeper Matt Evans kept busy in the opening exchanges, with Evans being forced to tip an inswinging corner over the bar after 11 minutes.
Evans came to Athletic’s rescue again in the 35th minute, saving with his feet from a direct free-kick.
Three minutes later, it was Athletic’s turn to come close as Ryan Sturges’ excellent cross found Jamie Irons in the area but his header hit the base of the post with home keeper Will Baker well beaten.
Athletic were determined to improve on the first half and both Joe Naylor and Luke Dunstan had shots blocked in the 48th minute following a good move down the left.
In the 68th minute a ball was played through to Naylor; he nudged the ball past Baker but was bundled over for an obvious penalty – the keeper receiving a yellow card for his troubles.
Athletic brought on Kieron Turner to take the penalty, but with his first kick of the game Turner’s penalty was well saved by the keeper high to his left.
Just five minutes after this, Athletic gave away a free-kick out on the left. The ball was swung in and Armstrong, who was completely unmarked in the area, headed into the goal.
Tring pushed forward for an equaliser but Oxhey defended in numbers, while Athletic nearly scored an own goal in the 89th minute but Dan Steadmans attempt at a clearance cannoned off the underside of the bar.
Oxhey: Will Baker, Adam Lowton, Jamie Speer, Carl Wigg, Tyler Connor, Gary Edwards, Tom Inch (Greg Usher 73), Simeon Armstrong (c)(Ben Alexander 76), Tim O’Mara, Luke Beardsworth, Lewis Cook (Craig Gorrie 60).
Tring: Matt Evans, Paul Jeffrey, Matt Jarvis, Chris Salmon (c), Kevin McManus, Dan Steadman, Ryan Sturges, Sam Joliffe, Chris Vardy (Joe Naylor 45, Kieron Turner 68), Jamie Irons (Jack Sunderland 79), Luke Dunstan.