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Pilgrims 1-1 Swansea City

Nationwide League

by Barbara Singleton

Adam Boyd was the late hero for Boston United as his 87th minute strike rescued a point against a Swansea side looking to edge back into promotion play-off contention. Boyd’s effort cancelled out a 14th minute goal by City’s Leon Britton which had seemed likely to have been enough for the visitors who had generally bossed the game. But United connections will certainly be hugely satisfied at prising out a point from a match in which they had played second fiddle for long spells. After a ninth minute scare when Neil Redfearn blasted a 25-yard free-kick a yard wide of the target, it was the visitors who held the early ascendancy. Home keeper Paul Bastock twice spilled crosses and had to rely on his defenders to bail him out. But there was nothing he could do to prevent Leon BRITTON from stabbing the ball home from 15 yards after a Brad Maylett cross from the right had set up the 14th minute opportunity. Boston hit back and Tom Bennett’s shot from distance was deflected away for a corner off Kristian O’Leary. Swansea, though responded and went close in the 25th minute through a header by Maylett via the trickery of Lee Trundle and then an Andy Robinson shot was pushed away at full stretch by Bastock. Boston replied with a few forays led by wing threats from Lee Thompson and Mark Angel, although the latter’s overall contribution was generally below par and United seldom offered genuine threats down the left.

Just before the break Swansea went close twice more, with efforts from Trundle and Lee Hylton being blocked. And the Swans carried on the attacking work at the start of the second half with Bastock having to make good saves in quick succession to thwart Trundle and Roberto Martinez. And then Maylett cut through the home rearguard but fired across goal and wide of the far post. Boston struggled to create any genuine moments of danger although another long range lob from Bennett dropped just over the bar with keeper Roger Freestone beaten. The influential Redfearn bowed out due to a hamstring strain on the hour and Boston had to wait until the 72nd minute for their next real chance, with Peter Duffield seeing a smart snap-shot well held by Freestone. Swansea swiftly replied on the counter attack and on 75 minutes, Robinson cut inside and drilled low beyond Bastock - and past the far post. Boston valiantly tried to summon up a late rally and threw on Stuart Douglas in place of the disappointing Angel a few minutes from time. Twice Duffield got on the end of Thompson crosses. First a header flew wide and then another effort was tipped onto the bar and over by Freestone. But Boston’s momentum carried on and in the 87th minute another excellent centre from Thompson - after a one-two with Graeme Jones - was headed back across goal by Douglas. Swansea failed to fully clear their lines and BOYD cashed in with a low finish from eight yards to earn a point.

United team (3-5-2): Bastock; Beevers (Chapman 46), Ellender, Balmer; Thompson, Redfearn (Duffield 59), Bennett, Greaves, Angel (Douglas 86); Boyd, Jones. Subs (not used): Hogg, Croudson (gk).

Match report copyright © Barbara Singleton, 2004.