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Non-league: Plucky Bournemouth Poppies please boss Ken Vaughan
MANAGER Ken Vaughan was left wondering what might have been after Bournemouth Poppies exited the Hampshire Senior Cup despite a gutsy display against Basingstoke Town.
The visitors, who ply their trade three levels above Poppies, started with nine players who made the squad for their last league outing and threatened to sweep aside their Wessex League rivals with a professional first-half display.
However, Town slipped into cruise control after the interval with Vaughan frustrated his plucky charges could not quite capitalise to set up a grand stand finish.
“The teams were worlds apart,” admitted Vaughan. “But I have to say the lads dug in really well and the biggest compliment came from their manager (Jason Bristow) who told me he thought we gave them a real game.
“In fairness nobody thought we would get near them. When we saw the team sheet we thought about damage limitation. We knew we would have to play well and, despite the result, I thought we did.
“Considering who we were up against we created a lot of chances in the second half, the only slight frustration was we couldn’t get the goal.
“It might have been a bit different if we had got back to 2-1 and I would have been interested to see their response if we had managed to score and rattle them in the last 10 minutes.”
Meanwhile, the Poppies boss said he was “confident” defender Richard Jackson and youngster Sam Turner would stay put despite receiving approaches from Southern League Bashley and Wessex rivals Christchurch respectively.
Poppies: Vaughan, Ayrton, Jackson, Hales (Cooper, 72), Pearce, Owens, Ingram, Martinez (Turner, 85), Watt, Costello, Phillips. Unused subs: Warren, Robinson.
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