Marty’s 100 per cent AFC Portchester start takes a hammering against Wessex League leaders Hamworthy
Marty Wallace suffered a defeat for the first time since taking interim charge of AFC Portchester as his side were caned 4-0 at home by Wessex League Premier leaders Hamworthy United.
The Royals, who had defender Ellis Martin shown a straight red card for a foul on Lee Francis on the half-hour mark, endured a tough afternoon against Tim Sills’ side.
Cam Munn put the table-toppers on their way inside 25 minutes before Eddie Hodge's 30-yard screamer doubled the advantage in first-half stoppage-time.
An almighty task was then made virtually impossible with Steve Devlin's thunderbolt free-kick and Munn's second making it 4-0 with more than 35 minutes still to play.
And Hamworthy's margin of victory could have been greater had Brad Snelling not saved Hodge's first-half spot-kick.
Portchester's start to life under Wallace had been perfect before the table-toppers came to town, winning their opening two matches 3-0.
But they were given a glimpse of the task ahead if they are to mount what looks an already unlikely title charge this term.
After what was a fairly quiet opening, lively teenage striker Munn fired Hamworthy ahead. The hosts twice failed to clear their lines and the forward superbly curled an effort in off the post on 23 minutes.
The Royals' task got even tougher eight minutes later when Martin was harshly shown a straight red card after tripping Francis in the area.
Snelling dived low to his left to keep out Hodge's penalty which gave the hosts a real lift.
The wind was taken out of their sails seconds before the break, though, as Hodge made up for his miss from the spot by finding the top corner from all of 30 yards.
Devlin's fiercely driven free-kick from the edge of the area was too hot to handle for Snelling and he could only parry the ball into the net on 54 minutes.
It was all over two minutes later with Munn rounding the onrushing keeper and slotting into an empty net for his second of the match.
Portchester's task was just damage limitation in the closing stages.
The Royals – the pre-season title favourites - are now 13 points adrift of Hamworthy with a game in hand. They are also 12 points adrift of second-placed Lymington, having played a game more.
AFC Portchester: Snelling: Evans, Searle, Lander, Martin, Johnston, Mason, Clark, Johnson, Wort, Laycock. Subs: Castle (Johnson, 37), Shepherd (Clark, 68), Preston (Mason, 86).