Owls' nine battle for draw

Holt United 1, Sprowston Athletic 1FOR the second game in a row Holt United were forced to play for two thirds of the match with 10 men, and the final 20 with only nine.

Holt United 1, Sprowston Athletic 1

FOR the second game in a row Holt United were forced to play for two thirds of the match with 10 men, and the final 20 with only nine.

They could not have made a better start when on five minutes a great left-wing cross from Matthew Sanders found Kevin Moore, who scored past Sill in Athletic's goal.

With their tails up they very nearly went two up but Moore had his shot blocked. Then on 12 minutes Toby Blowers rounded Sill but lost his balance as he was about to put the ball into the net.

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It was all one-way traffic until Holt suffered a major blow when star defender James Medlar picked up a knock and was replaced by Matthew Hudson.

He soon had a chance to increase Holt's lead, but when well placed shot straight at Sill. Moments later Blowers was badly taken out from behind. He retaliated and was sent off, with the visiting player shown only a yellow card.

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This changed the whole course of the game, with Sprowston coming more into the game - but Holt held their advantage up to the interval.

It did not take Sprowston long to make their man advantage count and equalise when Challen shot into an empty net. It was then a real backs to the wall job, and on more than one occasion the Owls' goal led a charmed life.

Their best chance came on 63 minutes but Armes saw his shot well saved by the advancing Justyn Goff. On 70 minutes, after being harshly booked, Moore was fouled as he chased a long ball. He then lunged and caught the last visiting defender, leaving the referee no option but to show a second yellow card.

Discipline with one or two of the Holt players leaves a lot to be desired, and could cost the side dearly at the end of the season.

Holt brought on Lindon-Ball, who had been out for six weeks, as the nine men battled bravely to keep the scores level and earn a superb point from a game that in the early stages looked as if they would win with ease.

On Saturday Holt play the first of back-to-back games, away to Cromer (2.30pm kick-off).

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