Gloucester City’s four-game winning streak was ended with defeat at Chippenham Town on a bleak evening for the Tigers.
Tim Harris was forced into making two changes from the side that won at St. Alban’s at the weekend, with Joe Hanks and Reece King coming into the side for Tom Webb and Adam Page.
City suffered the worst possible start with an early setback as the experienced Dave Pratt looped a header goalwards from a long throw-in that Hadler couldn’t keep from going in.
The Tigers would enjoy the better of the play for a period after that, as Joe Hanks delivered a free kick deep towards the back post from halfway.
Reece King got up to meet the aerial ball with a header but the tall central midfielder couldn’t get his effort on target.
Robbie Cundy was nearly left red-faced as he almost diverted the ball into his own net from a low cross, but Hadler was well positioned to stop it.
Ed Williams was City’s most potent attacking threat as he displayed great ball control to skip inside of three Chippenham defenders before his shot was deflected behind.
Williams was pulling the strings again as he slipped in Joe Parker who lashed a shot that Thompson had to get down well to keep out.
Jake Andrews flicked on dangerously at the near post from a low corner that, thankfully for the Tigers, evaded everyone and trickled away from danger.
Hadler had to be fully alert as he made an excellent stop on the goal line to keep out Michael Jones’ goal-bound toe poke.
City found themselves two goals down early on in the second half as Andrews raced in behind the Tigers back line amidst massive claims for offside that weren’t given and he applied the finish past Hadler.
Harris’ men were relentless in their pursuit of a breakthrough, though. Darren Mullings struck a volley from 25 yards that sailed over the bar, before Hanks let flu with a dipping volley that Thompson got behind well.
Referee Ian Fissenden had lost control of the game in the first half and struggled to regain it, only punishing an awful Tindle challenge on Williams with a yellow when a red would’ve been appropriate.
The Tigers continued to throw men forward, with Karnell Chambers forcing Thompson into a low stop at the near post, before Hanks rattled the crossbar with a fierce strike in the dying moments.
Gloucester City: Hadler, Thomas (capt), Avery, Hamilton, Cundy, Mullings, Hanks, King (Chambers 61’), Moore (Kotwica 61’), Parker (Pager 73’), Williams
Subs not used: Richards, Harris
Chippenham Town: Thompson, Felix, Jones, Tindle (capt), Richards, Smith, Pratt, Guthrie, Evans, Morgan, Andrews
Subs not used: Bowman, Donnelly, Morgan-Williams, Beeden
Referee: Ian Fissenden
Star man: Keiran Thomas