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Football: Cottesmore Amateurs grab a draw thanks to Tom Pope's late equalizer




Tom Pope repeated the script from seven days earlier when he again equalized seconds from time to grab a share of the points for Cottesmore Amateurs on Saturday.

In a virtual re-run of events in the previous game, Pope popped up well into added-on time to poke the ball home and secure a 2-2 draw with Friar Lane and Epworth.

The vital point made it four games without defeat for Amateurs, and a second week when disappointment was dramatically turned into last gasp delight.

But it was cruel blow for the visitors, who twice led the game and were on the verge of avenging a 4-0 defeat when the sides met in October.

Tom Pope (7327367)
Tom Pope (7327367)

Cottesmore were slow off the mark and and were let off the hook early on when Friar Lane had a goal ruled out for handball following a good cross.

But minutes later the referee awarded Friar Lane a spot kick when a home defender was judged to have blocked a shot with his arm and the kick was duly converted.

The goal seemed to spur on Amateurs and a few minutes later they were on level terms thanks to striker Pope, turning his man before unleashing an unstoppable strike from outside the area.

The rest of the first half was a story of missed chances for the home side, most notably when Tom Bendle was denied with only the keeper to beat, and Jordan Smith headed over, again with only the keeper to beat.

At half-time Cottesmore manager Rich Giblin urged his players to up the pace, but they struggled to generate any real chances and it was Friar Lane who took the lead for the second time.

A quick counter attack resulted in a cross which Hotson did well to deal with, but the ball fell to a striker who calmly slotted the ball into the top corner.

The rest of the half was all Cottesmore as they went in search of another equaliser, but Friar Lane were in no mood to concede the lead.

The best chance of the half fell to Pope, whose header was saved after a good knock down by Smith.

Then, just as it seemed Cottesmore’s unbeaten run was at an end, Pope snatched the point with that late intervention, when he tapped home a ball dropped at his feet by the keeper, who failed to hang on to a straightforward cross.

Cottesmore’s next game is against Kirby Muxloe Reserves.

Cottesmore: Hotson, Atkins, Wilke, Richards, Hamnett, (McJannet), Mellor, Bendle, Smith, (Mahlatsi), Pope, Stannard, Jordy, (Lomas).



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