POOLE Town boss Tom Killick claimed Havant & Waterlooville players had laughed in disbelief about the the penalty decision which helped them secure a 2-2 draw.

Defender Will Spetch was penalised for handball half an hour into the teams' National South clash at Westleigh Park, with Jason Prior slamming home on the rebound after keeper Nick Hutchings had saved his initial attempt.

Second-half goals from Matt Neale and Warren Bentley – the latter 13 minutes from time – appeared to have earned the visitors a priceless victory but Alfie Rutherford broke Dolphins' hearts with two minutes to play.

Killick told the Daily Echo: "The first goal was absolutely ridiculous. It was one of those decisions where the opposition were laughing about it.

"I was talking to their centre-forward afterwards and he said he couldn't believe the referee had given it.

"We are trying to climb away from the lower reaches of the league and a point doesn't improve things too much, whereas three points would have done.

"When you have an atrocious decision and an equaliser in the dying embers of the game, you tend to feel frustrated but we are doing a lot better. I feel we are showing a lot more spirit and if we can carry on doing that, we will be okay.

"The overriding emotions after the game were disappointment and frustration but once you have had a bit of time to get over that, you think of it as a useful point.

"They would say they had an awful lot of possession and that based on that they deserved a draw. But we defended well and they didn't create many opportunities."

Following Prior's controversial opener, a home side which included James Hayter and Wes Fogden held the lead until four minutes after the restart,

Poole got their much needed boost when Jamie Whisken nodded across goal, the ball was half-cleared and Neale rammed home.

The visitors' second was not dissimilar, this time Spetch heading the ball before Warren Bentley finished in accomplished fashion.

But as a crowd of more than 800 looked on, Prior nodded across the face and Rutherford was in the right place to convert.

With moments left, the Hawks' Theo Widdrington was red-carded for a poor challenge on substitute Steve Devlin.

Reflecting further on the referee's impact on the game, Killick added: "We felt extremely hard done by, not just in terms of the penalty decision.

"You have games where things don't go your way and it's easy for a referee to make a wrong decision but Saturday was just constant from the first minute to the last against us. We have to deal with that."

Poole Town are due to face Downton in the Bournemouth Senior Cup quarter-final on Tuesday and there could be some involvement for first-team players.

Dolphins: Hutchings, Lindsay, Moore, Spetch, Whisken, Pettefer, Bedford, Cooper (Devlin, 66), Bentley, Neale, Harfield. Unused subs: Balmer, Dickson, Mayes, Rees (g/k).