Needham Market 3-3 Banbury United
By Steve T
Banbury pick up a point at Market
A point earned or two points lost? Banbury extended their unbeaten run to five at Needham Market.
Injury meant Charlie Hawtin did not travel so Harry Whitehead came in at right-back. Manager Mike Ford opted to play with both John Mills and Steve Diggin up front.
It was Banbury's first league game in Suffolk since games against Bury in the 1970s and the wind and rain whipping in from the North Sea over the flat Turner-esque landscape saw a well below par gate of 221 for the home team despite the 30 or so who had travelled from Banbury.
Banbury started brightly and Diggin shot over after a good move around the area. However, in their first attack the home team took the lead on five minutes, no consolation for director Paul Duester who drew that in the golden goal. Joe Marsden cut in from the right and his shot from well outside the area arrowed into Manny Agboola's top right hand corner.
Banbury responded positively and linked up well around the box, which saw half chances for both Diggin and Mills and it was the former who grabbed the equaliser on 21 minutes. Good build up play saw Taylor released on the left, his cross wasn't dealt with and Diggin lashed the ball home from close range.
However ten minutes later and Needham Market were in front again. Adam Mills was put through the left hand channel and shot across Agboola for their second.
It looked like Banbury would go in behind at the break but Diggin scored his second with the last kick of the half. Greg Kaziboni under pressure on the right managed a high looping cross which, with great technique, Diggin met on the volley from eight yards and his shot had too much power for the keeper.
The second half began with George Nash replacing Eddie Odihambo, soon to be followed by Ravi Shami for Diggin who had picked up a knock when scoring his first.
Shami had a hand in Banbury's third which saw them take the lead on 53 minutes. He cut in from the right and saw a shot blocked but retained possession and laid the ball off to Kaziboni who scored from a central position at the top of the area.
However Banbury were unable to hold on to their lead and conceded an equaliser on 63 minutes in frustrating fashion; a long goal kick was flicked on and Reece Dobson ran on to score.
The home team pressed Banbury and there were some anxious moments in the box but final shots went wide or were well defended. Banbury too had chances with Rasulo and Taylor both seeing shots blocked in quick succession.
Banbury: 1. Emmanuel Agboola, 3. Matt Taylor, 5. Charlie Wise, 8. Edmund Hottor, 9. Ricky Johnson (C), 10. Steve Diggin (Sub 6. Ravi Shamsi 50'), 13. John Mills (Sub 13. Amer Awadh 74'), 15. Eddie Odhiambo (Sub 4. George Nash 46'), 16. Greg Kaziboni, 17. Harry Whitehead, 18. Giorgio Rasulo.
Subs not used: 11. Mark Bell, 20.Jamie Heapy.
Needham Market: 1. Jake Jessup, 2. Jake Dye, 3. Calum Sturgess (Sub Luke Ingram 30'), 4. Sam Squire, 5. Kieran Moprhew, 6. Daniel Morphew, 7. Joe Marsden, 8. Gareth Heath (C), 9. James Baker, 10. Reece Dobson, 11.Adam Mills.
Subs not used: 12 Jeremiah Kamanzi, 13. Tariq Issa, 15. Even Collard, 16. Finlay Shorten.
Attendance – 221