WIMBORNE Town boss Matty Holmes thought resolute Didcot used all their “experience” to dig in for a 1-0 victory at Cuthbury, writes Jack Tanner.

Adam Learoyd’s ninth-minute header from a corner was the deciding factor in a game of few clear-cut chances, as threadbare Magpies’ eight-game unbeaten run came to an end.

The hosts huffed and puffed in search of an equaliser, but failed to break down a stubborn Didcot defence.

Forced largely into strikes from range, Wimborne’s best chance came from Sam Bayston’s hopeful pot-shot which flew narrowly over.

The Cuthbury boss told the Daily Echo: “We didn’t really deserve to lose.

“The set-piece decided the game and then they just sat in, built a 10-foot brick wall and booted the ball forward to use the pace of their striker.

“However, we dealt with that really well and kept probing and tried to play football.

“All in all, I was really proud of the boys’ performance, they worked hard, tried to pass the ball and move Didcot around.

“But they were very wily, experienced, and saw the game out by time-wasting and booting the ball out. We did really well but it just wasn’t to be.”

According to Holmes, Magpies’ dressing room confidence had not been hit after a first defeat since October, with the boss believing his charges would bounce back.

“They are all disappointed because they all felt we should have got a draw – they didn’t deserve anything less,” he added.

“There’s natural disappointment after not getting anything out of that game, but they’ll respond.”

The result meant Wimborne slipped to fifth in Southern League West, with 33 points from 20 league games.

Despite Magpies’ lofty perch in the league table, Holmes remained certain his only remit was to improve on last season’s position of 11th spot.

“It’s nice to have the points in the bag so far. We’ve done really well but I’m still not interested in the play-offs,” he added.

“We are just going to keep on chipping away at each game until we get to 58 points.”

Adding to Holmes’s difficulties, Wimborne’s Sam Davidson was forced off through injury in the first-half against Didcot.

With other defensive casualties troubling his squad at present, the Cuthbury manager has a limited pool of senior players to pick from ahead of Tuesday's trip to Taunton (7.45pm).

He said: “We’ve only got 16 players. Sam and Matty Oldring are injured and Billy Maybury is on holiday, so we’re down to the bare bones.

"There’s nothing available to bring other players in, we’re stuck with it and have to get on with it."

Magpies: Benfield, Francis, Cole (Penny, 71), Davidson (Bayston, 43), Arnold, Kellaway, Stokoe, L Holmes (Walker, 85), T Holmes, Burbidge, Lovell. Unused subs: Bradley, Walsh (g/k).