Brocton 4 Racing Club Warwick 4
Brocton’s third draw in eight days has allowed Bromsgrove Sporting to move within two points of the Badgers at the top of the Midland Combination Premier.
However, the local side still have the destiny of the title in their own hands with 11 points needed from their final five matches.
The Badgers began this match well with Sam Bell through on goal within minutes of the start. He delayed his shot, looking for a better angle, slid the ball back and saw his effort cut out for a corner.
Matt Skinner then headed just wide on the fifth minute after good approach work by Dan Lomas and Gary Fife and then Fife himself shot wide in the following move.
On ten minutes, Bell got to the bye line again and cut in to feed Damien Charie at the near post. The little flick almost caught visiting keeper Conal Dowling out but he smuggled it away.
It began to look like one of those banana skin games where missing opportunities come back to bite you and when RC Warwick broke via their willing Ryan Longmead, who got in a decent cross for Jamie Corrigan to shoot, albeit over the bar, the home nerves began to show.
Dave Berks was next to reach the bye line and jinked inside before trying once again to feed Charie but once again Dowling was equal to the shot.
As RC Warwick broke again they had a man sent off for a petulant hit out at Dean Crowley who he felt had blocked his run, but still Brocton could not breach the visiting defence.
Paul McMahon got through and deftly beat the advancing keeper only to see his shot drift wide and then struck a post after Bell and Lomas had combined to give him another chance.
When Bell himself hit the post though as half time approached, it was McMahon on hand to put in the rebound.
The nerves were not settled though as Racing lived up to their name with a swift counter attack within moments of the restart and although Adam Whitehouse got a good hand to Harry Jarvis’s header from an excellent cross, the scores were level.
The visitors then suffered a harsh hand ball decision in their own box for Dave Ablewhite to put the Badgers 2-1 up at the break from the spot.
A combination of determination and perhaps a feeling of injustice helped Racing raise their game and no one could see which team had reduced numbers in the second period.
Twice Longmead’s perfectly timed runs took him past Brocton’s back line and twice he took full advantage with excellent control and composure to put the visitors back in front.
Brocton, stung, came back with a fine header from Fife after an even better cross from Bell and as visiting legs seemed to tire, Carl Morris put the Badgers in the lead after mounting pressure finally told.
But still Brocton could not hold on to their lead and while Whitehouse saved what would have been the gift of the season when Longmead was played in with a wayward back pass, the Racing player took full advantage from a deflection from a home head left him clear, although it appeared in an off side position. It was a harsh decision on Brocton this time, but Longmead deserved his bit of luck as he bagged his hat-trick.
This Saturday Brocton are away to Pershore Town and the reserves who drew 2-2 against RC Warwick reserves are also away to Continental Star Reserves (both games kick off at 3pm)