Ware 1 Norwich United 3
Ware suffer self inflicted wounds and end with a disappointing result.
In an otherwise even contest Ware gifted two goal scoring chances to the visitors before a harsh penalty decision effectively put the game beyond them. An equally harsh looking penalty at the other end gave them some hope of a come back but Norwich withstood a late onslaught to take the points.
There was little to choose between the two teams in a mostly uneventful first half as Ware's back four initially weathered whatever Norwich had to offer going forward. Meanwhile Ware's two new signings up front - Ivan Machado from Barton Rovers and Jordon Watson from Aveley - were doing their best to provide some attacking bite as they settled in amongst new colleagues.
The problems started for Ware just after the half hour mark when over elaboration in defence presented the ball to Norwich and with no-one tracking back left Dominique Njoya with two players to mark. The ball reached Adam Hipperson in the Ware area and with time and space he shot past Harry Voss for the lead.
There was an immediate response from the home side with Watson's header being gathered low on the line by Andy Wilton in the Norwich goal and Louis Bowen's header shortly after going just wide. However, Ware had failed to learn their lesson and ten minutes after the first goal the defence was exposed in similar fashion allowing Hipperson to double his and his team's total.
With Ware kicking towards the home end in the second half there were inevitably hopes that they could turn things around. For a while they held the upper hand but the game settled into another even contest.
Meanwhile, the referee, who had seemed quite lenient in the first half especially with some pretty tough challenges from the visitors started to flash yellow cards at frequent intervals, often frustrating fans who had seen those earlier infringements go unpunished. This was compounded with what, to Ware eyes at least, seemed a harsh penalty call.
Damien Green intercepted a Norwich attack with a sliding tackle and as the players collided with both of them on the ground, the ball ran along the centre back's body and then his arm. It looked innocent enough but Mr Begley had no hesitation in blowing for a penalty and Hipperson completed his hat trick from the spot on 64 minutes.
If Ware were aggrieved it took only three minutes for another penalty, equally tough on the defence, to be awarded at the other end. Ahmed Abdulla burst into the Norwich area and was stopped by what appeared to be a good tackle. Mr Begley thought otherwise and Abdulla picked himself up to score his first goal for the club, giving Wilton no chance with the penalty kick.
Norwich looked rattled for a while after this but Ware couldn't force a clear opening. With ten minutes to go there was some desperate defending as the visitors twice blocked goal bound efforts and as the clock ticked over into added time there was more panic in the Norwich defence as another Ware chance was hacked away. But the visitors had done enough to survive and Ware were left reliant on Romford's defeat at Waltham Abbey to stay clear of immediate trouble in the league table.
Ware: Harry Voss, Charlie Yexley, Dominique Njoya, Ahmed Abdulla, Damien Green, Louis Bowen, Marcus Milner, Murat Karagul (Gareth Madden 64mins), Jordon Watson, Ivan Machado (Harley Haag 77mins), Alaa Oujdi. Unused subs: Finley Long, Kevin Kuhn