25 February 2013

Lee Hodges happy with point despite last-kick disappointment

Source: Western Morning News LINK

Lee Hodges reflected on a "point won"  following Truro City's 1-1 Blue Square Bet South draw at Westcountry rivals Bath City.

Truro's player-manager, who played at sweeper for a second match running, said: "At 90 minutes and 0-0, we would have taken a point and been happy to do so.

"It wasn't the greatest of games or most exciting of spectacles, a typical mid-season affair, but defensively we looked solid and it looked as if 0-0 was on the cards."

The game sparked into life in stoppage time as Truro striker Andy Watkins found goal from 25 yards, lobbing home goalkeeper Jason Mellor.
Hodges said: "Everything changed from that minute. Andy has had half a sniff of a chance and got a great goal from outside the box. It was a brilliant strike and worthy of winning any match."

However, Watkins' wonder strike was cancelled out by Josh Low with the virtually the last kick of the game as he latched on to fellow substitute Charlie Griffiths' flick-on to level. Hodges said: "The weird thing was our goal changed the match and it certainly affected us.

"I don't know why but we turned to jelly after that defensively and they took advantage with a flick-on and another flick-on for Low to score.

"It was such a shame because we would have been happy with 0-0, then Watto scores and we are looking at three points and another away win. Then we concede with basically the last kick of the game, we hardly had time to kick off, and it felt more like a defeat."

Hodges admitted, given time to reflect, he gained a more philosophical outlook on the result.

Yesterday he said: "This morning it certainly feels like a point won. Like I said, Paul Kendall and Ben Gerring defended really well and, although we lost Martin Watts, Ben Williams came on and slotted in.

"We all did well defensively, it was just a shame that all of us were left looking at ourselves after they equalised.

"It was a culmination of not being able to deal with the cross, the first flick and the second and the goal, and for that we share the responsibility.

"It's something we need to address on Tuesday night when we play Weston, because for 90 minutes at Bath we defended well. We must just learn to defend well for 94 minutes, that's all."

Hodges reported fellow defender Watts had suffered an ankle injury and will be a fitness doubt for tomorrow's match against Weston-super-Mare at Treyew Road.

Hodges added: "On behalf of the lads and myself, I would like to thank all the supporters who travelled up and then cheered us for 90 minutes or more – they were amazing! I hope it was a point gained for them."

Truro's head of football development Steve Massey has refuted claims that City "chucked money" at Paul Kendall to sign for the club.

The central defender joined the White Tigers from Tiverton Town last week, with Tivvy manager Mark Saunders saying: "They [Truro[ just gave him an offer that he could not refuse to turn down.

"He has only got a little job, really, where he doesn't get paid that much."

However, Massey responded to Saunders' claim by saying: "The only thing we chucked at Paul was our ambition. He is well within our current wage structure."


LEE'S VERDICT on Bath City  1  Truro City  1:  "It was a very even game with defences on top.  Andy Watkins scored a fantastic goal with a half-chance and it was desperately disappointing that we could not hold on to that lead, especially as we had defended really well for most of the match."

"The fans were absolutely terrific at Bath, from start to finish, and the boys really appreciated it.  We hope to see them out in numbers and in good voice again tomorrow.  It's a fantastic boost for all the players and staff."

TEAM NEWS for tomorrow's match at home to Weston-Super-Mare, kick-off 7.45 pm.

 JAKE ASH (groin) out.  MARTIN WATTS (ankle) late fitness test. SQUAD:  Luke Payne, Paul Hider, Calron Hall, Lee Hodges, Paul Kendall, Ben Gerring, Marcus Martin, Ben Williams, Joe Broad, Cody Cooke, Les Afful, Andy Watkins, Barry Hayles, Martin Watts, Matt Wright.

Mike Truscott.

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