1st lose to Hastings United 2 - 1
By Mark Beard
Another disappointing defeat
Another disappointing defeat but Bridges were worthy of more against a side riding high in second place in the League table. By their own admission, Hastings do not look totally comfortable in defence, and they were casting envious glances at Joe Tennent and Antone Douglas, who were both excellent in the heart of Bridges' back line.
New goalkeeper James Shaw soon realised that the home attack might be useful as the dangerous Hassan Ibrahiym crossed and Daniel Ajakaiye's near post header landed safely in Shaw's arms. J ensen Grant then missed a golden opportunity for Bridges from Liam Collins's cross before Hastings took a 4th minute lead thanks to a touch of trickery by Youssouf Bamba which finished with a nice low shot.
However, Bridges were level within five minutes when Ibby Akanbi found, not for the first or last time, plenty of room on the left and crossed for Brannon O'Neill to back heel and net off the post. Olumide Oluwatimilehin then had a decent drive held by Charlie Horlock, whilst Akanbi screwed two efforts wide as he broke through and Omar Folkes saw a great drive somehow scrambled away by a nervous home defence.
The second half began with Oluwatimilehin intercepting but hitting his shot too quickly and too high, and Bridges were made to pay for their profligacy as after 55 minutes there was almost a repeat of United's opening goal with Youssouf Bamba again jinking into the box to net his second.
Shaw made an excellent block to prevent Ajakaiye from adding to the score, but Bridges were creating chances of their own, O'Neill being just wide as Akanbi played the ball back to him, Lee Hall firing just over and Folkes having four opportunities to at least test Horlock.
Shaw pushed away a good effort from Lanre Azeez before the game went into added time and Lee Hall saw red for a second bookable offence. The game fizzled out and Bridges were left with a distinct feeling that a golden opportunity had passed them by.
Aerotron Man of the Match: Antone Douglas
Report by Alf Blackler