For the match against Fleet Town, Cowes Sports FC were boosted by the reappearance of former player-manager and talisman, John McKie, who had resigned from Hamble FC.
McKie proved his worth as early as the 8th minute, when, after Jared Wetherick had had his shot parried by the Fleet keeper, he celebrated his return by being the first to react and poke the
ball into the back of the net. (1-0)
In an attempt to prevent the goal, a Fleet defender collapsed after colliding with his keeper and was taken to hospital with a dislocated elbow.
Fleet Town equalised on 20 minutes after a defensive mix up on the edge of the Cowes area, which allowed Dan Bone to score with ease for the away side (1-1). Dan Bone then put Fleet into the lead with his second goal of the game, sending a 25-yard screamer past Ed Hatt in the Cowes goal (1-2).
On the half hour mark, Aaron Redford gave the North Hampshire visitors a two-goal from a shot at close range, though he may have been offside (1-3).
John McKie continued to be a thorn in the side of the Fleet defence, forcing the Fleet keeper to tip an effort over the bar towards the end of the half.
HT: Cowes Sports 1-3 Fleet Town
Fleet took the lead on the hour mark, after Jimmy Wykes was booked for a clumsy challenge on the edge of the area, and Aaron Redford fired the resulting free-kick over the Cowes wall and into the far corner of the net (1-4). Cowes manager, Max Draper, then brought on his substitutes, with Ji Nash and Morgan Perrin replacing Ashley Brett and Jared Wetherick.
The Yachtsmen reduced the deficit to 2 goals, when Michael McEnery crossed to John McKie, who dispatched his shot into the goal from the edge of the penalty area (2-4). Then, in the 85th minute, Michael McEnery scored to set up a nail-biting finish (3-4).
The Yachtsman had a couple of good chances to equalise. First, Gareth Bricknell had a powerful shot headed off the line. Then, Ewan Cranwell sent a shot wide from a promising position. However, 5 minutes into added time, Michael McEnery broke through the Fleet defence to score a dramatic equaliser and level the scores moments before the final whistle (4-4).
FT: Cowes Sports 4-4 Fleet Town
Cowes Sports: Hatt, Wykes (C White), Bricknell, Bryan, Cranwell, McFarlane, Phillips, Brett (Nash), McKie, Wetherick (Perrin), McEnery.
The draw leaves Cowes in 19th position in the Wessex Premier, 6 points above bottom club, Amesbury Town.
With the Wessex League now suspended due to the Corona epidemic, this may be the last football match report to appear in Island Echo for some time.
We would like to thank Graham Brown and Simon Dear for providing photographs for Wessex League games in the 2019/2020 season.