A win and a defeat from first two games as Farnborough FC belatedly get their season up and running.
Spencer Day has warned his under-cooked Farnborough troops that the time for excusing a lack of fitness is fast running out after they slipped to their first defeat of the season at Havant & Waterlooville on Wednesday night.
With his side forced to sit out their first five matches of the season, Day always knew that ring-rustiness would threaten to derail early-season form, while Saturday's hard-fought 1-0 victory over Dover Athletic was always likely to take its toll.
As a result, Day's Boro flew out of the traps early at Westleigh Park and enjoyed the better of the first half with Dave Tarpey squandering a golden opportunity to deservedly put them a goal up at the break.
But, as expected, the weary legs showed after the break with goals from ex-Boro favourite Nic Ciardini - his first for the Hawks - and Ryan Woodford putting the home side in charge before Josh Huggins pulled a goal back in the final minute.
"I have no major complaints with the result really, but the fact was we just did not do enough in the second half," Day said.
"We weren't as fit as Havant, no question, and I've told the lads that come next Saturday when we go to Staines, then the excuse of fitness will no longer be valid.
"We were senseless and rudderless in the second half whereas we played some fantastic football in the first half and should have been a goal up at the break."
Tarpey followed on from his impressive goalscoring form in pre-season with the winner at Paddy Power Park on Saturday, but should have doubled his tally just before the break when he screwed an effort wide with the goal at his mercy.
And Farnborough were made to pay on 64 minutes when right-back Huggins failed to deal with a long ball forward, Christian Nanetti cut the ball back and Ciardini applied the kind of finish that made him such a hit with the Boro fans in three spells at his hometown club.
"It often happens that way in football, doesn't it," Day smiled.
"It was a great finish from Nic and good luck to him.
"We have absolutely no problem with him at all but he needed a fresh challenge and he took his chance really well in the way we know he can."
Ciardini's strike seemed to knock the stuffing out of his former club and on 82 minutes Havant doubled their lead - the former Boro man crossing for Woodford to slot home totally unmarked.
Similar poor defending handed Boro a lifeline in the dying seconds after Huggins was handed the freedom of the six-yard box to head home from Scott Donnelly's corner, but it proved too little, too late.
Boro have re-arranged two more of their missing five fixtures with the trip to Eastbourne Borough and home game with Chelmsford City rescheduled for Tuesday October 8 and 22 respectively.
Next up is a trip to Sutton United on Saturday (September 14) before Boreham Wood are the visitors to Paddy Power Park next Tuesday night (ko 7.45pm).