Written by Carlo Simone (@CSimonejourno)
Bournemouth Poppies extended their winless run to four after losing a two-goal lead away to Lymington.
After a first half in which Lymington dominated, Poppies took the lead midway through the second half from Manny Ohameje’s finish.
River Smith then doubled their lead just a few minutes later with a confident finish across goal.
However, Lymington finally capitalised on their chances as a Mike Gosney brace, including one from the penalty spot, secured the hosts a share of the points.
Manager Michael Cuffie made three changes to the side that faced Shaftesbury Town the previous week.
Marcus Cullen, Harry Cooper and Shiv Roushbaiani were replaced by Harvey Elsom, Manny Ohameje and Stepan Nersonski, who was making his first start in three months after returning from injury.
There was an added element of interest to this tie as Lymington had three former Poppies players in their squad. Ron Frost and Steve Flynn were in the starting XI, whilst Mikey Finch was on the bench.
The Linnets started off the game with attacking intent, as Elsom did well to block a shot from Lewis Ross, which Frost then followed up with an absolute piledriver of a strike which went just over the bar.
On 16 minutes Poppies then had their best chance of the half. A superb headed flick-on from Ohameje played in Smith, but Lymington goalkeeper Nic Jones rushed out and saved his effort.
Sam Jones in the opposite goal then had to deny Flynn after the striker’s low header flew straight at him.
The Poppies goalkeeper then maintained an impressive display throughout the rest of the half to ensure the visitors remained on level terms.
First, he provided a strong right hand to deny Gosney’s drive at the near post, before tipping another shot from the striker over the bar.
The Linnets then did have the ball in the back of the net following a long throw-in into the penalty area, but it was disallowed for Jones being impeded.
Poppies had been poor in that first half, and it initially seemed like that was going to continue in the second.
Frost was very close to getting on the scoresheet as his effort was cleared off the line after the ball fell back to him from a corner.
Then against the run of play, the visitors took the lead.
Smith was again played through on goal, and this time rounded the onrushing Jones.
However, he’d played it too far to one side and had to cut back. He then found the onrushing Ohameje, who smashed a superb shot past Jones.
This inspired some confidence in Smith, who doubled the Poppies’ lead just six minutes later.
He received the ball just outside the penalty area and struck a confident finish across goal.
The rest of the game was an open, flowing affair, as Aziz Aldahayan put Smith through on goal once again, but Jones came out on top in that situation to stop him making it 3-0.
This was arguably the turning point in the game as Lymington cut the deficit a minute later. Gosney curled an effort into the top corner on his left foot.
Smith was then agonisingly close to restoring Bournemouth’s two goal advantage, as he shot wide from a central position after Ohameje had headed the ball back to him.
However, on 83 minutes Lymington were awarded a penalty for a handball from a corner, which Gosney duly dispatched by sending Jones the wrong way.
The rest of the game revolved around a series of continuous counter-attacks and disruptive fouls without any significant chances being fashioned.
The full-time whistle then blew and whilst Poppies could be happy at a much improved second half display, there was still disappointment with the two dropped points.