Brighouse Echo Sport – Town News by Dave Parker

Controversial decisions from the match officials led to Brighouse Town losing 2-0 at home to NPL East Division League leaders Belper Town.

Town did take some time to get into the game against the much more experienced Derbyshire team, well led at the back by the imposing Danny South, apart from Myron Gibbons’ great chance to give them the lead inside 10 minutes when he was clear on goal but he fired too early on the angle and former FC Halifax Town goalkeeper Jonathan Hedge dealt with the shot.

Town were growing into the game when they suffered a major setback on the half-hour when Belper’s right winger Kevin Bastos went down in the penalty box in front of Town full-back Brandon Webster. Durham referee Sam Ross in full view waved away the claims for a penalty but his assistant Louie Parker was waving his flag for a foul on Bastos. After a chat with his official Mr Ross changed his mind and awarded a penalty which Bastos converted.

The home fans were incensed and also some 12 minutes later when Bastos went down injured just in front of Town keeper Jamie Hassall after colliding with centre-back Alex Phillipson from a corner and needed the physio. Mr Ross at first just appeared to be looking at an indirect free kick with his arm raised and then he pulled out Phillipson, booked him and pointed to the spot.

Bastos was up now and took his second penalty and made it 2-0. Controversy raged again as he did not leave the field after treatment and there was no signal for a head injury!

Town went in 2-0 down and didn’t deserve to be in that position of having to battle back.

In the second period Town played ever so well but didn’t have the luck to find the back of the net despite two shots on target from Josh Grant and Gibbons. They also should have had a penalty when Smith was brought down just in the box and this time the assistant was waving his flag for Town to be awarded a spot kick but Mr Ross waved play on!

Just before added on time Brighouse’s manager Vill Powell and his assistant Louis Axcell were cautioned by the referee and into the extra minutes Phillipson collected a second yellow and was then shown the red card to the crowd’s anger.

He now joins Grant and Jack Dando as being unavailable for Saturday’s away game at Pontefract Colieries (3pm). Grant and Dando have picked up three match bans from their dismissals at Bridlington Town.

Vice-captain and former Bradford City fullback Curtis Peters will be back in action after almost two months on the sidelines and his manager was looking to boost the squad in the early part of this week.

Loanee centre-back Jorge Sikora has opted to stay with Marske United where he returned two weeks ago after the Ashton Utd FA Trophy game in which he excelled.

Brighouse Town Women’s team played well and caused top the table Eccleshill Utd plenty of problems despite losing the game 3-0. Manager Cara Mahoney was pleased with her sides performance despite the scoreline as the visitors scored two of their goals from the penalty spot, along with a long range effort, and were a match for their opponents for long periods of the game.