Hadleigh United 0
Brantham Athletic 1
Hadleigh United’s title hopes suffered a setback on Tuesday night when fellow challengers Brantham controversially took all three points at the Millfield.
A debatable spot-kick in the second minute of stoppage time robbed Hadleigh of a deserved point and earned central defender Mark Goldfinch a red card.
A goalless draw looked certain until Brantham’s Dave Grimwood powerfully volleyed the ball towards goal, striking Goldfinch on the arm from point-blank range.
The referee’s decision stunned the home players and spectators alike before Goldfinch was sent off for dissent.
Ben Deacon then netted the penalty, stealing a win for Brantham in a game that was dominated by both defences.
Keeper Darren Moyes shone again, keeping out Deacon and Josh Mayhew in the first half.
Hadleigh are now 13 points behind Brantham with two games in hand.