INTERIM Dorchester Town co-managers Brian Churchill and Craig Robinson felt the Magpies’ 1-0 defeat to Hayes & Yeading United was “devastating”.

Churchill and Robinson watched on as Dorchester, who had matched the Pitching In Southern League Premier South leaders for large periods, were beaten in stoppage time.

It was the fourth time Dorchester had watched a point slip away in injury-time this season, this time Francis Amartey popping up to score in the 91st minute after the Magpies failed to clear their lines.

The result was completely undeserved as Dorchester worked tirelessly to disrupt United’s slick attack and created numerous chances of their own.

Speaking to Echosport, Churchill said: “We set up not to get beat.

“Obviously you’ve got to respect Hayes & Yeading, they’re top of the league, unbeaten, scored a hatful of goals and conceded very little.

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“The game plan was to nullify them and make them break us down. To a man I thought we were superb. They did every single thing I asked of them.

“They worked hard for each other, they put a tackle in, they slowed the game down when they needed to. They were brilliant. It was just devastating at the end.”

Robinson added: “I think the positives were that we created as well.

“We defended absolutely to the plan. There was real cohesion, team spirit. But at the end of the day, we’re all gutted.

“We’ve got nothing to show for what was a fantastic team performance.”

Churchill also emphasised just how much Dorchester deserved a point from the game.

He said: “The players are obviously gutted because one: They stuck to the plan. Two: It was so close.

“People will look at it and see 1-0, same old Dorch, last minute. But we thoroughly deserved something out of that game.

“Maybe not to win it, but we certainly deserved a point against top of the league. But we’ve got nothing.

“Wednesday we go again against Tiverton and we put in that much endeavour and work together like we did we’ll get something, I’m sure.

“I’ve been there all season but me and Craig took training on (Thursday) and they’ve worked really hard.

“They took on board everything that was set and they’ve executed it.”

READ MORE: Dorchester Town 0-1 Hayes & Yeading - match report

Robinson said: “We set the training session out to be high intensity. That’s what we wanted to see.

“We knew coming in to (Saturday) that we were going to have to work incredibly hard. We had a good chat with them, they seemed to buy into it.

“We covered that off through 90 minutes. The team spirit was there.

“What we’ve got to do now is make sure we (use) that energy, that commitment and work rate and take that into the next game.”

On Dorchester’s chances, Churchill said: “Alfie (Stanley) had a couple of 50-yard strikes which he was unlucky (with).

“One landed on the roof of the net with the keeper in nomansland.

“Against the top teams you’ve got to take a chance. If we go 1-0 up it’s a totally different game if we’ve got something to hold on to.

“We were holding on for a point but there wasn’t a lot in the game.”

There was also praise for teenager Ben Hughes, who shone in central midfield.

“We had an 18-year-old playing CDM for us,” Churchill said.

“That’s his Southern League debut – superb. No one would’ve known that was his debut.

“He plays in my 23s, we chucked him in at the deep end – superb.

“But right across the pitch everyone did their job. That’s all I can ask.”

Robinson added: “The difference is that we went 1-0 down but actually there was a buzz to get the game going again.

“The players didn’t want the game to end. I’ve watched performances where we’ve conceded one and we’ve never looked like we’re going to win the game.

“There was a real drive that we could get back into this game.”

In stoppage time United keeper Ravan Constable was injured in a clash with Dorchester’s Rudy Plummer, ending the match following a 21-minute delay.

An ambulance was called for a suspected dislocated hip but, after checks at Dorset County Hospital, Constable was given the all clear for a possible break or dislocation.