Magpies of Dereham Town fail to soar after the interval during draw at Great Wakering Rovers

Dereham, black and white, dropped points in their quest to reach the Ryman North play-offs on Saturd

Dereham, black and white, dropped points in their quest to reach the Ryman North play-offs on Saturday. Picture: IAN BURT - Credit: Ian Burt

Dereham squandered a two-goal lead and had to settle for a point at Burroughs Park, writes Rene Kendal.

The Magpies started confidently with Sam Borrer volleying into keeper Adam Seal's arms. The home keeper then dropped a deep Frazer Blake-Tracy centre but a defender was on hand to clear.

Dereham made the breakthrough in the 27th minute when Leon Smith bundled over Matt Hockley in the box as he received Olly Willis' ball from the right with the referee awarding a penalty. Liam Wales made no mistake from the spot. Dereham nearly increased their lead but Ryan Hawkins was unlucky to strike a post after being put through by Craig Bussens.

The lively Hawkins won a corner on the right in the 54th minute. From his centre Hockley flicked the ball on to Bussens who netted from close range to increase the Magpies' lead.

Wakering responded by winning a corner three minutes later with keeper Andy Wilton making a fine save from Jay Nash. The home side quickly took a short corner with the ball being played across the area and visiting defender Harry Barker unfortunately slicing into his own net.

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Dereham should have restored their two-goal cushion as Hawkins rounded keeper Seal but fired into the side netting when well placed. In the 70th minute indecision by defender Dan Morphew allowed Wakering leading scorer Nash to turn in the box and hammer home a sweet left-foot drive to level matters.

Play then flowed from end-to-end with no clear chances created by either side, the Magpies' Borrer going closest to finding winner with a header late on.

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