Boston United 1 Rushden & Diamonds 1

Match Report courtesy of Unofficial Rushden & Diamonds Website (1997-2001)

10th March 2001 – York Street (Attendance: 3,434)

Diamonds Scorers: Jackson

Webmaster’s MoM: Peters

Match Report by Andrew

A late equaliser denied Diamonds maximum points in an enthralling game at York Street on Saturday.

However, it was a case of ‘a point gained’ as news came through of Yeovil’s surprise away defeat at Kettering, a result which allowed Diamonds to extend their lead at the top of the Conference.

Justin Jackson gave Diamonds a deserved lead after 61 minutes but Ken Charlery hit a dramatic injury 3 minutes from time.

Diamonds kept the same side that beat Woking a week earlier. New goalkeeper Bertrand Bossu replaced Stuart Naylor on the bench.

There was a heavy downpour prior to the game, which left the York Street surface looking more like a quagmire than a football pitch. Any passing moves were confined to the flanks of a dreadful surface.

Diamonds enjoyed the better of the opening exchanges and indeed the first half. In the third minute, Ross Weatherstone fed Paul Bastock a short backpass which saw the Pilgrims keeper’s clearance hit Jackson on the head before being put out for a throw-in.

Duane Darby forced the first corner of the game a minute later from which Andy Burgess’ inswinging flag kick was clawed away by Bastock as Mark Peters lurked at the far post.

On 11 minutes, Jackson’s curling shot from 20 yards went wide of the goal, before Simon Weatherstone’s low shot was blocked by Turley’s outstretched leg.

Home keeper Bastock saved Burgess’ low shot at the second attempt on the quarter of an hour while at the other end, Jamie Cook headed wide of the right hand upright.

The big talking point of the game came on 20 minutes. Burgess went on a surging run before being flattened by a crude challenge by Mark Clifford. The former Ilkeston player was extremely lucky to get away with just a yellow card.

Shaun Carey’s fine run in the 26th minute was ended when Clifford’s attempted clearance struck teammate Joby Gowshall in the face. The ball fell nicely to Jackson but Bastock superbly turned the shot round the post. Peters headed wide from the resultant corner taken by Brady.

In the 40th minute, Ross Weatherstone’s centre was punched away by Turley as Mickey Nuttell threatened but Rushden immediately broke away and Jackson saw his shot turned aside again by the impressive Bastock.

In time added on, Jamie Cook’s free-kick from the right was nodded back across goal by Nuttell, and Ross Weatherstone headed over.

Two minutes after the restart, Peters blocked Simon Weatherstone’s shot as United started to put pressure on Diamonds. Four minutes later, the same player tried a long-range effort that went wide of the right hand post.

Diamonds took the lead on 61 minutes. Brady started the move and found Darby out on the right. Although Bastock managed to parry Darby’s shot, Brady turned the ball left to Jackson who scored his 17th Conference goal from close range.

Simon Weatherstone drilled a long-range effort wide of the target in the 65th minute after Cook’s corner had been cleared out to him while brother Ross had a 20 yard shot saved by Turley in the mud.

There was more drama in the 80th minute after appeals for a penalty against Setchell were waved away. Boston manager Steve Evans continued to argue with the referee and was duly sent to the stands.

In the 82nd minute, Gowshall headed down Cook’s corner and Ross Weatherstone fired over. Two minutes later, Charlery missed a sitter when from Cook’s cross, he somehow put his header the wrong side of the post.

Three minutes from time, Boston equalised. Nuttell headed on Jim Dick’s free kick and Charlery, with his back to goal, lobbed the ball over Turley and into the net.

The disappointment in the visitors end was visually, if not verbally, apparent, but all that changed moments later as word got round that Kettering had come from behind to defeat Yeovil.

Diamonds: Turley, Mustafa, Setchell, Carey, Peters, Warburton, Butterworth, Brady, Jackson, Darby, Burgess. Subs: Sale, Rodwell, Butcher, Wormull, Bossu.

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