Swallow at the double in Boro’s Christmas cracker

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THURLOW NUNN LEAGUE

FIRST DIVISION

Haverhill Borough 3

Downham Town 3

By Gary Brown at New Croft

Ryan Swallow provided some seasonal cheer for Borough followers on Saturday, as his two goals rescued a point for his team, who were three goals behind with 25 minutes left in the game.

Borough started the game well with Ryan Phillips testing Downham ‘keeper Alex Jarvis twice in the opening period.

However, the visitors went ahead after 12 minutes as Matt Bussens broke into the Borough penalty area and beat goalkeeper Graham Smith down to his left.

The hosts responded when Swallow’s shot from the edge of the box was saved by Jarvis, before Borough skipper Jarid Robson crossed for Rory Bone to turn and shoot wide.

Downham doubled their lead after 24 minutes with a slick move. A quick roll out from the goalkeeper into the middle of the pitch was played forward quickly to Ben Fenn, who burst into the Borough penalty area and shot under Smith to double the advantage.

Ryan Phillips forced Jarvis into a fine save on the half hour, tipping over his powerful shot, and as the half ended Borough continued to press as Robson and Swallow both had chances which were saved.

Downham added a third early in the second half when Karl Tansley converted a penalty, but as thick fog encompassed The Croft, Borough fought back in thrilling style.

After 66 minutes Ryan Phillips cut inside onto his right foot before firing past Jarvis to reduce the arrears, and less than five minutes later Phillips turned provider, crossing for Swallow to slide the ball beyond Jarvis.

Rory Bone forced Jarvis into another save until, with two minutes left on the clock, Borough were awarded a free-kick 30 yards from goal.

Swallow stepped up and curled the ball over the wall and into the top corner of the goal via the crossbar to the delight of the home crowd.

There was still time for Downham to launch one final attack and as Jack Gould’s shot headed goalwards, Tommy Hardwick stretched out a leg to clear to ensure the game ended as a draw.

Borough: Smith, Hardwick, Regan (52), Forshaw, Lock, Phillips C, Phillips R, Robson, Bone, Swallow, Pruden. Subs: Botten (52), Westcott

n Mildenhall Town recorded their 10th consecutive win of the season against Haverhill Rovers, whose chances were made almost impossible following the sending off of goalkeeper Charlie Turner early in the match. Stephen Spriggs scored the goals in the home team’s 2-0 win.