Winchester 1 Highworth 1
Winchester's attempt to obtain their first league win since August was thwarted when visitors Highworth who had been earlier reduced to 10 men converted a penalty with nine minutes to go.
Highworth who were last season promoted from the Hellenic Premier Division despite finishing third last season have made a reasonable start to this season and are joint leading goalscorers in the division. Their current captain is Wayne Turk formerly of Salisbury and one of their forwards is Callum Parsons who is a well known opponent of Winchester's from his Swindon Supermarine days. Highworth are also former Hellenic League champions and reached the semi finals of the F A Vase in 2014/15.
Winchester made two changes to the starting line-up from Tuesday's line up with Joe Hayward who was serving a 1 match ban being replaced by another former Eastleigh scholar Ollie Griggs at right back and Connor Cocklin being replaced by Brad Gale with Joe Cook wearing the number 5 shirt.
Before the game a minute's silence was observed for Life President Terry Bone whose funeral like that of another club stalwart Tina Elkins was held during the week and was well attended.
Winchester made as bright start coming close in the first minute and Oli Bailey having a shot saved at the expense of a corner. Callum Parsons shot wide with a powerfully struck effort, but Winchester continued to press and Ron Carr came close on a couple of occasions, once following a quickly taken free kick from Tyrell Mitford.
Toumamni Sidibi came close for the visitors who always looked dangerous on the break, while Jamie Barron hit the bar for the home team. Just as it was beginning to look very much that a lively first half was likely to end goalless Winchester took the lead a minute before the break with Oli Bailey scoring with a well executed chip.
In the second half both teams had half chances with Jamie Barron shooting over and Sean Wood having a shot saved for the visitors. However Winchester began to defend deeply and Toumani Sidibi who came close on one occasion was a threat.
However Sidibi was shown a straight red card for a foul on Jamie Barron which eventually led to the Winchester captain going off. Winchester had used three substitutes and with an extra man began to look more of an attacking threat with Carr coming close.
Ashley Edenborough had one shot saved for the visitors, but Winchester were looking comfortable until nine minutes from time the visitors were awarded a penalty. At the time many people did not see what this was awarded for, but it the indications were that it was for a push on Sean Wood. Edenborough though duly converted the penalty.
After the goal Winchester certainly increased the tempo in the search for the winner with substitute Liam Gilbewrt being involved in many of their attacks and the pace of Oli Bailey and Rob Carr always being a threat. They forced several corners and forced goalkeeper Connor Johns to make two crucial saves in added on time, but were unable to find a winning goal and had to settle for a draw in a game that they really should have won.
On Saturday Winchester are away to Barnstaple.