Brian Stock insists he was hard done by after seeing red in the Hawks’ FA Cup exit.
The midfielder was sent off following two yellow cards just before the hour mark of the 3-0 defeat against his former club Preston North End.
In fairness, it probably had little impact on the result, with the Lilywhites well in control of the game from early on.
But with the score at 2-0, Stock getting his marching orders killed off all remaining hopes of the Hawks staging a fightback against the League One side.
He said: ‘I don’t think I deserved to get sent off – not at all.
‘For the second one, I have got no intent to kick the lad at all.
‘I’ve gone for the ball and I’ve hit thin air.
‘It’s hard enough playing against a Preston side with 11 men but you feel like you have let the side down when you get sent off and you leave them playing with 10.
‘If those two decisions are yellow cards, I would be getting sent off every week.
‘I’ve not gone to ground, I’ve made two fouls and I’ve got sent off. It’s hard to take.
‘But it’s almost getting to a point where you can’t make a tackle any more.
‘I’m competitive but I’m not a dirty player.
‘I want to win games and all I’ve done is try to win two balls.
‘Okay, I can accept they are free-kicks but they weren’t bad tackles and I can’t believe I was sat in the changing room when I felt I was playing quite well.
‘The less said about the referee, the better.’
The 32-year-old former Wales international was playing for Burnley in the Championship last season and looked set for a summer move to Barnsley before returning south.
But it made a refreshing change for a player to speak to the media after a red card and he was also honest in his assessment of the game.
He said: ‘Sometimes you have to hold your hands up and say they were the better side.
‘At 0-0, we looked scared and a couple of players didn’t really turn up.
‘We gave them the initiative and it took us a good 15 minutes to wake up.
‘You can’t really do that against any opposition, let alone a League One side.
‘We were on the back foot but I think we showed a lot of spirit.
‘There were some stages where we played some neat football and caused them a few problems.
‘Had we been able to nick a goal it might have been different but they deserved the win.’
Stock was not alone in being shown a red card, as former Bournemouth team-mate Warren Cummings later went the same way for a handball on the goal-line.
But Stock has also now urged his team-mates to respond to the defeat as they continue an impressive run of form in Vanarama Conference South.
‘The objective for this club is to get promoted and we have to get back to concentrating on that,’ said Stock.
‘It’s nice to have a little cup run but we have come up against a very good side in Preston. We’ve had some good results in recent weeks, we’ve had a bit of a disappointment but we have to put it behind us and kick on.’