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Howell urges first placed Bognor to bounce back after Grays day

Bognor boss Jamie Howell is urging his side to get back on the winning track after the Rocks’ 11-game unbeaten run was ended by bottom side Grays Athletic.


The Nyewood Lane side are still top of the Ryman Premier after the surprise 2-1 defeat last weekend.


But Howell is urging his side to put that performance behind them and move the focus on to a trip to Harrow Borough tomorrow (3pm) and then Hendon away on Tuesday (7.45pm).


Howell said: “The Grays match we will not dwell on it as I cannot believe that anything we did that day would have worked.


“We had an off day. But luckily that’s not something that happens very often with the squad we have.”


In a match of few chances, the Rocks thought they had escaped with a draw after James Fraser nodded in an equaliser with five minutes to go.


But after Harvey Whyte had been dismissed for two bookable offences, Grays countered and Lheureux Menga scored the winner deep into stoppage time.


A chance for the Rocks to immediately bounce back on Tuesday at Burgess Hill Town was halted by the weather just 20 minutes before kick off.


It means Howell’s side have had to wait a week to blow those Grays blues away, with a trip to Harrow Borough scheduled for tomorrow.


Then it’s back to north-west London to face second bottom Hendon, a side that have not won in the league since the start of January. They did, however, beat Bognor 2-0 at Nyewood Lane in November.


Both sides are in the bottom third of the league and have struggled in recent weeks.


But, as shown at the weekend, Bognor have struggled against some of the so-called lesser sides in the division, dropping points against sides like Merstham and Burgess Hill.


Howell said: I think we’ve struggled against sides towards the bottom.


“The league is tough so if we lose to sides down the bottom people think we are doing bad. But sides lose to everyone regularly as anyone can beat anyone.”


And as for avenging the Hendon defeat?


Howell said: “I don’t really worry about it. They were better than us on the day. We have 16 games to go and we will try and get as many points as as we can.


“I’ve always said we will have a blip and it’s all about how we recover. We may lose again this weekend but it’s just about getting back on track as soon as you can.”

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