Newport Pagnell Town
Desborough Town





This game was played in extremely difficult conditions as there was persistent rain throughout.  Desborough provided the early pressure as they had two free kicks that were slung into the box by Merson Styles to no avail within the first few minutes. It took the Swans slightly longer to adjust to the conditions.  When they did they slowly but surely started to control proceedings and in the seventeenth minute were awarded a penalty when Leo Adams handled inside the area.  Dom Lawless stepped up to strike the resultant spot kick but was denied by a superb save from Chris Jones, diving full length to his left to save. Newport had a ten-minute spell from the half hour mark where they put the Ar Tarn goal under extreme pressure, starting with a Remy Forrester corner that would have curled straight into the net had Jones not been alert enough to claw the ball to safety.  Darryl Smith beat two players but only managed to place his shot wide of the upright, Lawless also had a good chance that was blocked before Jones was in the right place to collect Adam Pryke’s header from the subsequent corner.  Jones was on hand again to tip Forrester’s free kick over the bar shortly before the break.


Newport started the second half as they had left off in the first with Smith shooting over from the edge of the area.  The visitors still posed a threat and within a couple of minutes a John Dean shot forced Mark Osborn to push the ball behind for a corner.  However, as the rain continued to descend Luke Emery put his strike over the bar as the home side pushed for the opening goal.  The best move of the match, with ten minutes to go, saw a beautiful interchange of passes between Smith, debutant Ben Ford, Kelvin Osei-Addo and Smith again that carved out a chance that was finally thwarted by the ever-alert Jones.  With six minutes left on the clock Styles took a free kick from a narrow angle.  He put a daisy cutter of a kick towards goal that eluded everybody and found its way into the back of the net to give Desborough the lead.  Pryke, Stuart Smeathers and Osei-Addo had shots blocked as Ar Tarn were forced into a rear-guard action as Newport went in search of an equaliser. Time was running out fast and it looked as if the Swans’ luck had run out as Greg Ling’s header was deflected just wide of the post but Sam O’Neill’s ensuing corner caused confusion in the Desborough defence before Pryke blasted the ball home to give Newport a point.

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