Hythe manager Clive Cook is still trying to work out why one of his players was sent off on Saturday.

Mitchell Dickenson, on the stretch, missed the ball and fouled Carshalton’s Tommy Bradford inside his own half.

Less than five seconds later, the referee was holding his red card aloft to the amazement of the former Gillingham defender, who now faces a three-match ban.

Cook said: “I’ve been watching it all weekend and it’s not a sending-off in a million years.

“He went into the tackle but got pulled back. You can see him getting his left shoulder pulled back and I thought it was a free-kick the other way.

“His left leg’s underneath him and his right leg did make contact but that’s because he was off balance. He didn’t go in with his foot up, it was where he was pulled back.

“The ref turned round and said he gave a straight red because he wanted to calm everyone down and that if he didn’t need to do that, it would have been a yellow. I completely don’t understand that.

“It’s yellow or red. To me, it was a yellow and have a word. It was the 45th minute and it wasn’t a goalscoring opportunity.

“It’s not as if it was a two-footer. It’s so frustrating.”

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