REPORT: Cheltenham Town 1 Wigan Athletic 1: Humphrys sees second-half penalty saved as below-par Latics held
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Latics flew out of the traps and were in front inside six minutes.
Jordan Jones got free down the left, and his cross was turned into his own net by Lewis Freestone.
It could have been even better six minutes later, only for Martial Godo's low drive to beat goalkeeper Luke Southwood, only to come back off the far post.
That seemed to be a turning point in the game - even at such an early stage - as things started to become much tougher for the visitors.
First, Steven Sessegnon limped off the field, with Scott Smith replacing him at right-back.
Then, just after the half-hour mark, the home side levelled from the penalty spot.
Baba Adeeko's attempted challenge for the ball saw Will Goodwin, and Liam Sercombe drilled the spot-kick down the middle of the goal.
It was all Cheltenham at this point, with a Ben Williams effort looping on to the roof of the net for a corner.
Then, in first-half stoppage-time, a Cheltenham corner caused unease in the Latics rearguard, and Rob Street tried to nip in, only for Tickle to fly off his line to gather.
The second period continued in the same vein, with a long free-kick being helped on for Goodwin to fire against a post.
Kell Watts took over from Adeeko, with Smith moving into midfield, and Omar Rekik switching to right back.
And the visitors were handed a gilt-edged opportunity to restore their lead on 64 minutes, when Godo was tripped in the box by Freestone.
Humphrys stepped up to take it, but his effort was weak and far too close to the goalkeeper, who gratefully pouched the ball.
At the other end, Tickle saved from veteran defender Curtis Davies, as the home side looked the more likely to nick it.
Despite the late introduction of Josh Stones and Callum McManaman for Callum Lang and Godo, the game ended all square, with the game ending in controversy.
Referee Carl Brook appeared to blow for a free-kick after Tickle picked up a backpass, only to quickly call for full-time.