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Wycombe Wanderers 1-2 Pilgrims

Coca Cola League

Boston United's unbeaten away form in 2005 continued as just as in the home match against Wycombe, Andy Kirk scored two goals, taking his total for the season to nineteen. During the week Boston's squad had been bolstered by the addition of Stephen O'Donnell and Steven Boyack from Scotland and on a one month loan from Sheffield United Italian Emanuele Gabrieli. With Paul Ellender out suspended and Mark Greaves still unavailable through injury, O'Donnell and Gabrieli started and Boyack began on the subs' bench. Boston got off to the perfect start when after just four minutes they took the lead. Andy KIRK was given two bites at the cherry after being picked out by David Noble's throughball. His initial shot was saved by keeper Frank Talia, but he made no mistake with his second chance. Wycombe now applied the pressure in search of an equaliser. Nathan Tyson saw a shot go wide of the upright after he outpaced Austin McCann. In a five minute period in the middle of the half Jason Lee, Emanuele Gabrieli and Stephen O'Donnell all received yellow cards as referee Michael Jones decided to clamp down on the most innocuous of challenges. Wycombe almost equalised just after the half hour when veteran striker Steve Claridge contrived to miss the target from six yards out after getting on the end of a cross by Nathan Tyson.

On 38 minutes Nathan Abbey joined the list of Boston bookings after being adjudged to have fouled Tyson when both rushed to meet a ball knocked into the area by Keith Ryan. As the collision occurred well inside the area, the referee pointed to the spot and Jonny DIXON fired the penalty home. Boston began the second half strongly although Wycombe spurned a great chance to go in front when Claridge headed Steve Guppy's free kick over the bar. Steven Boyack then made his debut, coming on for Stephen O'Donnell. Boyack soon linked well with Kirk, nodding on a throw-in by Simon Rusk, but Kirk's shot across the face of the goal went wide. Boyack then provided a great cross to Jason Lee at the far post, but his header hit the post. Five minutes from time Kirk scored the winning goal after Jason Lee flicked on a pass downfield from Rusk and KIRK picked his spot to beat Talia. Despite more than six minutes of time added on, Boston held on to secure their third away win in the League this season. After the match manager Steve Evans commented: "It's been a monumental effort by everyone in the squad this week considering the depletion we've had, the changes we've had to make and the key players we've had missing."

United team: Nathan Abbey, Lee Beevers, Austin McCann, Emanuele Gabrieli, Simon Rusk, Stephen O'Donnell (Steven Boyack 57), David Noble, Chris Holland, Andy Kirk (Lee Thompson 90), Jason Lee, Danny Thomas (Courtney Pitt 74). Subs not used: Daryl Clare, Dean West.

Match report copyright © Ken Fox, 2005.