Harrowby United’s first home game ends all square

Harrowby United man-of-the-match Sam Hill.
Harrowby United man-of-the-match Sam Hill.
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United Counties League

Premier Division

Harrowby United 2

Eynesbury Rovers 2

Harrowby United’s first home game of the season against Eynesbury Rovers was an entertaining affair that ended all square in a game neither side deserved to lose.

A busy week for Arrows manager Nick Andersen saw him introduce five new faces to the squad that entertained their visitors from St Neots.

Harrowby started brightly and inside the first five minutes created two good chances. First, Simon Bolland had a shot deflected for a corner and then debutant striker Callum Wilkinson did well to hold off a defender before shooting over.

Rovers responded and, after 17 minutes, good work down the right by Lee Bassett saw the striker play the ball into the area for Ben Colmer whose shot struck the cross bar. Three minutes later, Arrows right back John Currall produced an excellent challenge to thwart Rover’s Matt Bannister as he advanced into the penalty area.

Harrowby made the breakthrough after half an hour when a 40-yard free kick was played into the Eynesbury area by Ian Ward. The lofted ball into the box was misjudged by Lee Jordan and drifted over the stranded keeper and into the net.

Rovers levelled things up five minutes later. A free kick by Stephen Smith dipped over Billy Stubbs to find Ben Colmer who chested the ball down and played it in for Bannister to fire past Jack Drury in the Harrowby goal.

Shortly after, Wilkinson brought a save from Jordan and Harrowby man-of-the match Sam Hill headed wide from a Liam Harper free kick.

The visitors finished the half strongly and Bannister should have done better when after a quick break down the left saw the ball played into the area for him only to drag his shot wide. Tom Coles hit the Harrowby crossbar when the ball was not cleared from a corner.

Rovers started the second half strongly and took the lead five minutes in. Another ball into the Harrowby penalty area was not cleared and Bannister struck low past Drury and into the corner of the net.

The Arrows equaliser arrived in the 57th minute when a free kick into the Rovers area was knocked out before being threaded back in to new midfielder Ryan Rushan. Rushan controlled before slotting the ball past Jordan.

Harrowby pushed for a winner and went close on more than one occasion. After 63 minutes, Hill hit a fine volley from the edge of the area, and two minutes later another good effort from Wilkinson flashed across the Eynesbury goal and was cleared off the line by Bannister.

Wilkinson was fouled on the edge of the box after 72 minutes and Harper stepped up to fire in the free kick which skimmed the bar. A minute later, Danny Durkin robbed a Rovers defender and crossed for Wilkinson who shot just over the bar.

On 80 minutes, a cute ball through from Rushan again found Wilkinson who, under pressure, lifted his shot over.

Harrowby United: Drury, Currall, Watson, Hill, Stubbs (c), Harper (Taylor, 78), Bolland, Rushan, Ward (Dyson, 45), Wilkinson, Durkin. Sub not used: Andersen.