Hampton & Richmond's Blue Square South debut ended in defeat - with Kelvin McIntosh's red card before the hour proving crucial.

There had been little between the sides up to that point, but Andy Atkin netted near-post headers from corners in the 67th and 72nd minutes to give Eastbourne the points.

Hampton started brightly with Lawrence Yaku looking sharp at front and he forced Dave Hogan into a smart save to his left.

McIntosh picked up his first booking in the 17th minute for pulling back on Eastbourne player.

The visitors then had their first real effort on goal, with Scott Ramsay heading wide.

Then a superb ball from debutant Alex Haddow found Yaku, who gave Stuart Lake a shooting opportunity which went wide.

At the other end, after Dean Wells charged down a shot from Scott Chamberlain, Matt Crabb collected the loose ball, cutting in from the left and forcing Matt Lovett to parry the ball away for a corner.

In the 32nd minute Yaku was scythed down from behind but the defender wasn't cautioned which seemed inconsistent with a decision made a couple of minutes later when Marcello Fernandes was booked for what seemed to be a lesser foul.

From the Fernandes foul, Chamberlain struck a fierce free kick aimed at the top corner, Lovett again called into action.

In the last action before half time Hampton had probably their best chance of the game. Yaku won the ball out on the right side, clipped the ball in, Elliott Godfrey kept the ball in play and hooked it back into the six yard area, Haddow following in lunged a header which seemed destined for the top corner before Hogan leapt across and diverted the ball away for a corner.

Thirty-five seconds into the second half, from a Barrie Matthews free kick, Rob Paris dived to head the ball across the face of the goal.

Eastbourne had Marc Pullen booked for a foul on Yaku in the 55th minute.

Then referee Fissenden dismissed McIntosh after spotting an off-the-ball foul.

After Atkin's two similar goals, there was only really one winner, although Alan Inns went close with a header from Haddow's free kick late on.

Hampton: Matt Lovett; Marcello Fernandes, Alex Haddow, Orlando Jeffrey, Rob Paris, Dean Wells, Stuart Lake (Elliott Frost, 71), Elliott Godfrey (Alan Inns, 71), Lawrence Yaku, Barrie Matthews (Dudley Gardner, 71), Kelvin McIntosh.

Subs not used ; Ryan Lake & Aaron Barnett Hampton & Richmond visit Bath City at Twerton Park in Blue Square South on Saturday (3pm). It will be the first ever meeting between the sides. Bath, who drew at Bromley on Saturday, won the Southern League last season.