Parr exhausted and ecstatic after Reds avoid drop... Rams and Royals win

Joe Briggs on the attack for Petersfield at Newport IW on Saturday. Picture: David Brawn
Joe Briggs on the attack for Petersfield at Newport IW on Saturday. Picture: David Brawn
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Fareham Town won 1-0 at Andover Town to complete the Great Escape as they secured Wessex League premier division survival.

The Reds were bottom of the league going into the final two weeks of the season.

Matt Parr’s team, however, finished with three straight wins to stay up by the skin of their teeth.

A first-half Ash Tattersall goal proved enough to secure the precious three points.

Tattersall pounced midway through the opening 45 minutes after the home goalkeeper had saved from Bradey Norton.

Reds boss Parr praised a superb club effort.

He said: ‘Everyone stuck together through a difficult time and it paid off.

‘It is the first time I have been involved in a relegation battle and without doubt it’s been the hardest test of my managerial career.

‘The club showed great faith and backed me when I wanted to stay and get the job done.

‘It shows you can work through the rough times and come through them.

‘We are all now mentally exhausted but ecstatic we are staying up.

‘In the next few weeks I will sit down with the owners and work out the best way forward.’

Champions Petersfield Town finished in style with a 1-0 win against Newport IW at St George’s Park.

A well-taken 25th-minute goal from Will Essai ensured the Rams completed the season on a winning note, recording their 29th league success of the season.

AFC Portchester ended their successful campaign on a high by beating Fawley 3-1 at Wicor Rec.

Rob Evans, Nikolai Littleton and Joe Noakes found the net for the Royals.

Horndean slipped to a 2-1 defeat against relegation-battling visitors Totton & Eling at Five Heads Park.

‘It was our fourth game in seven days and it showed,’ said Deans manager Dave Carter.

‘We were okay in the first half and led at half-time.

‘In the second half we looked leg weary and could hardly move.’

The hosts had Nathan Kirby sent off in the second half as the visitors came from behind to win.

Fourth-placed Moneyfields lost 2-1 at Hamworthy United.