MANAGER Paul Collicutt reckons Saturday’s defeat to Bideford “was a game too far” for Evesham United’s weary squad.

Having completed a maximum nine-point haul over Christmas and New Year, Robins faltered in the second half of a 3-1 loss having led at half-time.

It was Evesham's fourth match in 11 days and Collicutt conceded an unchanged line-up from the 7-1 success at Highworth Town on January 1 may have been the wrong move.

“If anyone had said we would take nine points out of 12 over the festive period I would have said ‘thanks very much’ but having done so well for three games, it hurt to come unstuck in that last one,” said Collicutt.

“We were all bitterly disappointed with the way we performed.

“I think we lacked freshness and unfortunately, human nature can put you in a comfort zone when you’re on the back of a performance like the one at Highworth.

“That said, I don’t know many managers that would change a side that had won 7-1. In hindsight, perhaps I should have, maybe it was a game too far for a few of the lads and four games in 11 days is a big ask.

“We came in one up at half-time but everything we said during the break went out of the window when we conceded within a minute of play starting again.

“That made it an uphill task but we were beaten by the better team on the day.

"I have spoken to Sean (Joyce, Bideford manager) since and he said that was the best they had played for the past two or three seasons.

“The reason we are all at this level is because we have players who can be hot one minute and cold the next. We carried too many players on Saturday, we have an honest bunch here and I think they know that.

“The big thing now is how we react. When we are on song we are hard to beat but across the past two games I have seen the good, the bad and the ugly.

“It was a hard one to take having done what we had in the previous few games. No one came out with any credit, unfortunately.”