|Michael Malcolm struggles against tough Lowestoft defence|
The day started with the weather opitamising the Rooks optimism, with very bright sunshine great expectations were had of the new look Rooks despite the over 5 hour journey up to Lowestoft Town. The pitch was looking great and there were plenty of friendly fans to talk to, one of which made it known that Lowestoft, who were defeated in the play off final last season, have only signed around 3 players and have a very settled squad.
One bloke asked me whether I was ready for our "drubbing" I just smiled at him expecting at least a close game, but in the end Lewes were well beaten by a strong Lowestoft side who are clearly going to put in a strong promotion push this season, leaving Lewes bottom of the league.
From the start Lowestoft looked the better side passing it around well and creating chances. The first chance came when Hustwick fouled his man close to the penalty area over the left hand side, the ball was swung in but floated over everyones head, but from that moment on the Lowestoft winger knew he had Hustwick beaten.
Lowestoft carried on in the acendancy and nearly took the lead once more when a whipped ball in from the right played pinball in the area for a bit before finding a Lowestoft player who saw his shot spectacularly blocked by Hustwick who kept the ball out from point blanc range.
Lewes were not making it easy for themselves with hoofed long balls up to their three attackers; Ian Draycott, Wade Small and Michael Malcolm, none of which were tall enough to win the ball and so let Lowestoft come back at Lewes and nearly score again when another ball in from the right beating Nic Ciardinin to get a cross in, was blocked by Steve Robinson and out for a corner. The corner found its man perfectly on the edge of the box who tried a spectacular volley which fell just wide of the goal.
And Lowestoft still continued as the side on top with Lewes barely getting a touch of the ball before seeing it come straight back at them again, this time Hustwick had fouled his man again and the free kick was drilled in only for a header to go flying over the bar.
Despite the clear upper hand for Lowestoft, Lewes took the lead just 6 minutes in to the first half in bizzare gashion when a ball forward from Steve Robinson meant for Wade Small only found the Lowestoft captain who, in a mad moment under pressure from Wade Small, turned towards his own goal and lobbed the keeper in what would have been a brilliant goal if it was scored in the other net. The confused keeper could do nothing but watch as the ball went over his head and bounced into the net.
With Lewes one up the game evened itself out for a bit and Lewes had a bit more possesion, Dwayne Lee had a goalden chance to make it 2-0 when a ball in from the right found his head just 2 yards from the goal but somehow he managed to put it over the bar.
However it didn't take long for Lowestoft to get back on top and before long they had an equaliser when Hustwick gave away yet another free kick on the left which was swung in and found a Lowestoft head perfectly and the player sent the ball into the back of the net to equalise for Lowestoft.
With little incident left in the first half, the Lowestoft captain got himself a straight red card for swearing at the referee after he thought Wade Small had fouled him. This gave Lewes hope but Lowestoft were still the stronger side and a clynical foul by Steve Robinson stopped a good counter attacking move which could of earnt him a red if he was unlucky, but the referee only gave a yellow and decided not to even the numbers to the distaste of the Lowestoft fans, not at all happy with the referees performance.
Lewes were far short of good enough today and on the right hand side they looked particularly weak with Draycott continually being searched for but he couldn't seem to get himself in the right places to keep up his good goalscoring form from last season and our pre season.
Lewes fans would be pleased to see that Wade Small has signed a contract with the club and so will be playing for Lewes this season after making 25 appearances for Aldershot last season, but he didn'rt see enough of the ball today as instead a long ball method was used to bad effect as the strong Lowestoft defenders easily dealt with it.
So 1-1 at half time and Lewes were still confident they could get a result as they had a man advantage, but within thirty seconds of the break they were losing 2-1 as a ball forward was completly missed by Hustwick allowing the left winger to cut inside the box, spread the ball across and it was blasted in to give ten man Lowestoft the lead.
It has to be said Lewes were better second half but this just cut down on the chances Lowestoft had as Lewes had a lot of possesion but didn't really find anything to do with it and in the end they were getting desperate, shown by a long range shot by Michael Malcolm which was easily saved by the keeer.
In the end Lewes through players forward which in the last minute allowed Lowestoft to counter attack and score a well finished goal to wrap up the game and make it 3-1, with the Rooks at the bottom of the league.
As they say, the only way is up.
GK Steve Williams
RB Max Hustwick ( Malvin Kamara)
CB Steve Robinson
CB Dominic Sterling
LB Nic Ciardini
CM Dwayne Lee
CM Matt Somner
CM Hakeem Adelakun (Jamie Cade)
RF Ian Draycot (Paul Booth)
CF Wade Small
LF Michael Malcolm