Rovers bowed out of the Velocity Cup on Wednesday night when going down on penalties to Leatherhead after the sides had played out an entertaining 2-2 draw.

Rovers struck first, early in the game when Liam Holden turned home a low Tyler Cox free kick and side-footed home a neat finish. Rovers were enjoying a strong opening and just before the quarter hour good work by Connor French saw him set up Cox on the left but he was denied by a timely challenge by Maxwell Mullins.

Leathehead were getting back into the game and on 18 minutes a delightful ball round the corner by Fikayo Atewologun found Adam Neal but his effort washed straight at endurance Johnson. A minute later and the scores were level, Neal beat Kelvin Mabango and the ball into the area was fired home by Keane Anderson to bring the scores level.

It was all Leatherhead now and Omarr Lawson saw a goalbound effort well saved by Johnson. Shawn Lyle saw a left footed effort for Rovers deflected behind for a corner but it was Leatherhead who struck next. With the half approaching injury time, we fell behind. Having failed to clear a corner, the follow up shot came in an struck the post, and Lawson was on hand to poke the ball home.

The second half was a more cagey affair with neither side able to find another goal. We made a succession of changes with Courtney Swaby, Franklin Nzeh, Brian Testolin and Ryan Stedman-Hoyte entering proceedings.

The changes seemed to have the desired effect, with just over 20 minutes remaining a dangerous Swaby free kick was well defended by Oliver Allen, as we pushed for an equaliser.

Chances came at both ends and a dangerous Archie Burnett free kick struck our bar and from the clearance and break, Rovers debutant Shakeel Morris was denied by a great save by Leatherhead keeper Slavomir Huk. From the the corner Huk spilt the ball and substitute Testolin forced the ball home for 2-2.

Full time came with the scores level and the sides went to penalties.

Leatherhead struck first and we levelled through Swaby, Leatherhead retook the lead and Testolin sew effort his effort saved by Huk to leave the visitors 2-1 to the good.

The visitors increased it to 3-1, before Rhamar Garrett-Douglas made it 3-2. Leatherhead made it 4-2, before Hugo Odogwu-Atkinson reduced the arrears to 4-3.

With a chance to win the game, Leatherhead skied their penalty over the bar, but Rovers were unable to take advantage, Huk saving Kyron Richards spot kick to put the visitors through.

 

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