Bostik Premier: Burgess Hill 2 Harrow Borough 3
PUBLISHED: 19:39 14 January 2018 | UPDATED: 19:39 14 January 2018
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For the second successive week, Harrow quickly established a two-goal lead only for their opponents to equalise, before Boro won the game with a fine strike from George Moore in the closing minutes.
The odds on the same outcome at Billericay next week must be very long, but six points from the last two games has transformed the worrying league position.
Steve Baker continued with three centre backs, so successful against Needham Market the previous Saturday, but the late, non-availablilty of Chinua Cole, meant that Charles Banya started in the left wing back position and Boro were only able to field two substitutes.
As with the previous week, Harrow flew out of the traps and opened the scoring after three minutes as Cumberbatch sent Ryan Moss down the left channel and he crossed to Sahr Kabba, who fed the ball back to Michael Bryan just inside the penalty area to take a step and stroke into the left corner.
The small band of Harrow supporters had barely finished celebrating when, after six minutes, the team doubled their lead with a brilliant solo effort from Moss. After running with the ball to the right corner flag, Moss turned his defender and, under pressure, advanced along the goal line. When his first shot bounced off keeper Tony Di Bernardo at the near post, it came back to Moss and he was able to flick the ball round the keeper into the goal.
Burgess Hill nearly pulled a goal back after 15 minutes, when Connor Tighe reached a long ball at the right corner flag and crossed to Tony Garrod in the middle of the penalty area, but with the goal at his mercy, he screwed his shot wide.
Harrow were dominating play with neat passing moves, although the build-up sometimes seemed a little slow, and Moss was enjoying considerable success in the air from the occasional long ball.
The Hillians, in contrast, were relying on long punts upfield in the hope that one of these would put a forward through on goal.
However, they did pull a goal back against the run of play after 30 minutes, when a tussle in the Harrow penalty area finished with the ball running out to the left hand corner of the box and Tighe ran on to it and hit a hard, low shot, which beat Melvin Minter at the near post.
A few minutes later, Lee Harding found Garrod at the near post, but Shaun Preddie was able to shepherd the ball away.
The hosts had another good chance to equalise when Cumberbatch was too slow to pass the ball out of defence and the ball bounced off a Burgess Hill player through to a forward, but Preddie came to the rescue again and, under pressure, guided the ball back to Minter.
The Hillians replaced Garrod early in the second half with Pat Harding, a smaller, faster striker, and this gave the Harrow defence a different challenge.
Harrow had the first chance of the half when Michael Bryan robbed a Burgess Hill defender on the left and crossed to Moss, unmarked in the middle of the goal, but he sliced his shot wide of the far post.
Burgess Hill also had a good chance on 58 minutes, when Minter could only parry a shot wide to Harding, but he skied the ball over the open goal.
Burgess Hill were now enjoying the majority of the play as they chased an equaliser and Harrow`s passing moves were becoming rare.
A Harrow corner by Moore reached Preddie near the penalty spot, but he was falling as he reached the ball and his shot cleared the bar.
It was all square on 68 minutes from a corner, as a kick from the right was met by Stephane Ngamvoulou, the tallest player on the field, who appeared unmarked in the centre of the penalty area and headed past Minter.
Despite losing their two-goal lead, Harrow`s heads didn`t drop and both teams chased a winner.
A Banya free kick was parried into the air by Di Bernado, whilst at the other end a poor Minter clearance gave Che Krabbendam a run on goal, but he was kept out by the Harrow defence.
A Bryan cross reached Kabba in front of goal, but he couldn`t get a shot through the surrounding defenders, before Harrow won the game in the 82nd minute.
A cross from the left eluded Moss and the Burgess Hill defence in the middle of the goal and reached George Moore just outside of the penalty area on the right.
The players, including the Hillians` keeper, waited for him to cross the ball back, instead of which he hit a firm shot which bent into the corner of the net at the near post, with Di Bernardo static in the middle of the goal.
Harrow played out the remaining minutes in reasonable comfort, notable only for a fine save by Minter and two earth shaking tackles by Mark McLeod.
Harrow: Minter, Moore, Pepera, Preddie, Longe-King, Cumberbatch (Stewart 83), Kabba (Hall 90), McLeod, Moss, Bryan, Banya.
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