MANAGER Michael Cuffie felt former club Lymington Town had benefited from being reduced to 10 men after his Christchurch charges crashed to a 5-2 defeat last night.
With the score at 1-1, Lymo lost Sam Alexander-Floyd for a second bookable offence just after the interval but rallied to rattle home three goals, despite their numerical disadvantage.
The tempestuous nature of the clash continued when Priory’s Dan Steer and Town’s Shane Sims were dismissed by referee Chris Mannering for an altercation after Steer had grabbed a consolation with four minutes to play.
But while Cuffie was critical of the visitors’ approach and the decision to send off Steer during the stormy showdown, he refused to blame his side’s setback on the turbulent events at Hurn Bridge.
Cuffie told the Daily Echo: “I didn’t feel Dan should have been sent off, he tried to grab the ball after he scored and got pushed into the goalpost.
“They (Lymington) were very physical and verbal all night and I spoke to the referee and a couple of their players at half-time because it could have ended up a free-for-all.
“I felt the referee could have handled certain situations better but it had no bearing on the result, they looked a better side with 10 men while we looked very tired.”
Rhys Owen, Harry Morgan, James Burden, Marc Fairbrother, Sam Carter and Lee Clark all come back into contention for Saturday's home match with Horndean.
Elsewhere in the Wessex Premier, Hamworthy United travel to Blackfield & Langley, Bournemouth Poppies visit Fareham Town and Verwood are away to Sholing (all 3pm).
Bashley will be consigned to bottom spot in the Southern League Premier Division if they lose at St Neots Town, while Wimborne Town travel to Cinderford Town in Southern South & West (both 3pm).
Bash: (from) Jones, Rolls, Flint, Ansell, Marden, Morris, Roberts, Strickland, Joyce, Odam, Black-more, Brookes, Gazzard, George.
Magpies: (from) Harvell, Arnold, Brimson, Maybury, Oliver, Kemble, Blake, Grose, Griffin, Davidson, Stokoe, Gamble, Webb, Roast, Burton-Hemmings, Donachy, Phillipson-Masters.