KNOWLE suffered a disappointing 2-1 defeat to local rivals Hampton as they lost ground on their title rivals.
Goals from Hamaz Siddique and Will Simmons condemned the Robins to defeat with Nathan Corry’s screamer proving in vain.
And the result means Knowle sit third in the Midland Football League Division Two table, seven points behind leaders Cadbury Athletic.
The game was played on Hampton’s heavy second pitch as both teams embarked on their first game of the new year following a series of postponements.
And Knowle made a slow start as Siddique put Hampton in front on three minutes after some poor defending from the visitors.
The Robins responded with a couple of good chances as Brandon Hague ran through before shooting wide whilst Tom Cullen was denied by Matthew Allely when one-on-one.
And Hampton made Knowle pay for those missed chances when Simmons found the net on 20 minutes after a free-kick was launched into the penalty area.
However, Knowle were given a route back into the game when they were awarded a penalty only for new signing Zak Harbon to see his spot kick saved by Allely.
Despite being without boss Clive Seeley through suspension, Knowle provided an immediate response after the break.
Corry produced a stunning 30-yard piledriver to halve the deficit on 48 minutes as Knowle finally found a way back into the game.
The visitors created numerous chances to draw level but were unable to beat Allely in the Hampton goal.
Even the dismissal of Hampton’s Tom Parnaby, after he received two yellow cards, was not enough for Knowle to find an equaliser on a frustrating afternoon.
The away side had Ethan Galloway sent to the sin bin at the death to compound a disappoitning result that leaves them seven points adrift of the league leaders.
Knowle are next in action away at Alcester Town on Saturday, January 22 with kick-off at 2pm at Stratford Road.