Hemel took the lead but let it slip to fall on the road at relegation-threatened Truro City yesterday (Saturday) in a game that saw the hosts confirm their survival.
There was joy at the final whistle for the home side as The White Tigers secured their National League South status with the 2-1 victory over The Tudors.
It was a tense and edgy start to the game, but Hemel made the most of it when they were were awarded a penalty in the 28th minute. In-form Ben Greenhalgh stepped up to convert to give the Tudors the lead in what was his third goal in as many games.
But the hosts refused to let their heads drop and six minutes later were back on level terms when Rocky Neal set up Niall Thompson who stayed cool to find the net.
The goal gave the Cornishmen a shot in the arm and Cody Cooke went close to giving them the lead on 39 minutes.
It was City who were asking all the questions and two minutes before half-time they were able to take the lead when the ball was played into Neal from the left who set himself up for a strike that flew beyond the reach of Hemel keeper Jamie Butler for his 18th goal of the season.
The relegation-fighting City started the second period the brighter and Neal rattled the woodwork.
The Tudors’ cause to get back in the game was hindered significantly on 53 minutes when Tony Diagne was sent-off for hauling down Neal when he looked to break away.
It was the third Hemel player to see red in the past eight games.
Ten-man Hemel battled well for the remained of the match to make it a nervy ending tfor the home side, who were keenly aware of their slender single-goal advantage.
Butler did well four minutes from time to clear the danger after a Truro player burst through on goal.
However, Truro were able to hold firm to see out the win with the full-time whistle signaling celebrations as it was confirmed that the hosts’ National League South status had been confirmed.
The Tudors’ local rivals St Albans drew 2-2 with fellow mid-table side East Thurrock and so remain a place above Hemel in the table in tenth with a two-point advantage.
It means Town could still gain local bragging rights with a win next weekend in the final game of the season when they host 15th-placed Weston-Super-Mare at Vauxhall Road, if St Albans slip up on the road at Eastbourne Borough. A draw will not be enough, even if St Albans were to lose, as The Saints have a superior goal difference (+7 against -4).