Football: Rusthall revival stopped by Deal’s last-minute equaliser

Football: Rusthall revival stopped by Deal's last-minute equaliser
RISING HOPES: New keeper Aaron McGuigan makes a save PHOTO: Dean Jacquin

RUSTHALL missed out on a chance to gain on their relegation rivals after three matches unbeaten – while lowly Hollands & Blair produced a surprise win at Sheppey to move clear of the bottom two.

Rusthall had a slow start and allowed Deal to dominate the first half-hour with their speed and power but they created few chances as the home defence stood firm.

Then the game swung Rusthall’s way as Charlie Clover’s long-range shot went just over the bar and he also chipped over the diving goalkeeper but saw the ball go just wide.

Nodirbek received the ball on the right and rounded the full-back, running across the defence in front of goal before planting a superb strike into the net to give Rusthall the lead.

Proving highly effective for the home side, Bobomuradov followed his goal with another run and shot which went over the crossbar.

It looked like Rusthall would go in at the interval ahead but Connor Coyne managed a smart turn and shot to equalise on the stroke of half-time.

Rusthall welcomed back their erstwhile prolific scorer Steph Harper and he came on in the second half to make the home side look far more potent in attack with his skill and experience.

In the 73rd minute Rusthall produced a good exchange of passes and the ball fell to Callum Gallie in the area. He was brought down for a penalty and Harper coolly stepped up to score.

At that point the home side seemed to retreat in order to defend their lead. Aaron McGuigan in made a magnificent save to thwart Deal but on the stroke of full-time the visitors found the equaliser with a shot by Sam Wilson.

Next Rusthall travel to bottom-of-the-table Croydon in what is surely a must-win game on Saturday [March 9, kick-off 3pm].

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