Sampson keeps Royal Navy afloat

Royal Navy skipper Phil Archbold attempts to drive his side forward last night. Picture: Allan Hutchings (13875-701)
Royal Navy skipper Phil Archbold attempts to drive his side forward last night. Picture: Allan Hutchings (13875-701)
Pompey and Fulham drew 3-3. Picture: Joe Pepler

Pompey boss disappointed not to get victory

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Scott Sampson was the Royal Navy hero as they hit back to draw 1-1 with the Army at Westleigh Park last night.

Both teams went into the game on the back of defeats by the RAF.

But it was the Army, buoyed by a hat-trick from former Pompey striker Lee Bradbury that set up a 4-1 win for the Army Veterans against the Royal Navy Veterans earlier in the day, who started best.

And it took a last-ditch save from keeper Matt Shortt to prevent a Jason Bates free-kick putting them ahead.

Callum Wilkinson fired low past the post as the Army continued to press.

Then Shortt had a lucky escape as a deep cross slipped through his fingers and out for a corner.

But it wasn’t long before the Army finally hit the front.

Three minutes before the break Andrew Cottam headed home from a free-kick.

Back came the Royal Navy, though, and Army keeper Luke Cairney made a terrific diving save to stop a thunderous effort from Ross McEvoy.

They continued to press after the break, too, and Sampson grabbed an equaliser on 54 minutes.

Army keeper Cairney blocked a shot inside the area but Sampson was the quickest to react to knock in the rebound from six yards.

Jay Hubbard then rattled the Royal Navy crossbar from a corner and Bates curled a free-kick narrowly over but the defences held firm to leave the honours shared.

ROYAL NAVY: Shortt, Archbold, Foxhall, MNE Hildreth, Ardley, Sampson, Husbands, McEvoy, Todd, Horseman, Young. Subs: Berry, Emmerson, Lakin, Carns, Campbell, Booker, Bews

ARMY: Cairney, Lonorgon, Lavelle, Emmerson, Greenfield, Rizza, Cottam, Bates, Hubbard, Davidson, Wilkinson. Subs: Noble, Carroll, Robinson, Tomkins, Haley

– KEVIN RICKETTS