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Hemel Hempstead Town (A)
Sat Apr 1

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Hemel Hempstead Town (A)
Sat Apr 1 15:00
The Vanarama National League South

Late strike is another cruel blow for Rebels

| League
Att: 843
Slough Town
Brazil (53), Abbott (68)
2 - 2
Dover Athletic
Haag (24), Adams (84)
Gary Brazil
Even as they trailed 1-0 at half-time there was never a sense that Slough would lose this one. The Rebels had made all the running in the first half, only to concede a ridiculous goal through a defensive mix-up that knocked them off their stride for the rest of the half.

Two excellent goals from Gary Brazil and Gary Abbott gave Slough a deserved second half lead, but then it was the old, old story as a scrappy late goal denied them all three points.

An injury to Gary Blackford at Bath on Saturday gave Lloyd Owusu his first start since coming back from injury, but otherwise Brian McDermott stuck with the eleven that had performed well at Bath. Owusu looked sharp from the start and has lost none-of his pace, as he showed twice in the first quarter of an hour when bearing down on goal.

On the first occasion keeper Ron Fearon was forced to come out of his box and clear with his head, and two minutes later he had to be quick to deny Owusu again.

Slough could have taken the lead in the 17th minute when Cliff Hercules was given a clear header from a corner but sent it over. A minute later a goalmouth scramble saw Owusu and Abbott both go close before the ball was forced out for a corner, and again Hercules won it in the air to set up Brazil who fired his shot over the bar.

Confidence seemed to be high, and the Rebels put together the best move of the game minutes later when Fiore broke from defence, played a neat one-two with Brazil before finding Ted McMinn wide on the right. McMinn found Owusu bursting through but the young striker was fractionally offside.

It was clear who was on top but all the good work was suddenly undone in the 24th when Kelly Haag capitalised on a terrible defensive mix-up. As Ben Miles came out to collect a long ball, Hercules headed it back past his keeper and Haag was quickest to pick up the loose ball and put it in.

Slough took a while to pick themselves up, but they ended the half with another good spell of pressure, and it took just eight minutes of the second half to grab a well-worked equaliser. A free kick on the edge of the box following a foul on Brazil was floated in by McMinn. Abbott, unmarked at the far post, headed it back across the goal for Brazil to slide in and score.

And having set up the first, Abbott scored the second in spectacular style in the 68th. Put clear by Hardyman, Abbott fought off defender lain O'Connell and let fly from outside the area to send the ball rocketing into the top of the net. It was a deserved lead, and a cruel blow when Darren Adams, who had looked a handful throughout the second half, grabbed an equaliser six minutes from time.

Dover Athletic Line up

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