AFC Dunstable hold title-chasing Comrades

Southern League Division One Central: Berkhamsted 1 AFC Dunstable 1

By James Smith
Wednesday, 30th March 2022, 12:25 pm

AFC Dunstable held automatic Southern League Division One Central promotion-chasers Berkhamsted to a 1-1 draw at Broadwater on Saturday.

With the hosts second and AFC third going into the game, an entertaining encounter was always on the cards, as the visitors had the better chances in the first half.

Boss Steve Heath was without Christian Tavernier who pulled out before the warm up, while Jermaine Hall was unavailable and Ben Farrell suspended.

The OD’s dominated the opening 45 minutes, creating numerous opportunities, BJ Christie’s strike deflecting over the bar.

A fine move down the left saw a cross agonisingly drift over Christie’s head, before AFC led on 21 minutes, Newman Carney curling a beautiful free kick into the net for his first of the season.

Nathan Frater’s half volley was well saved by Cameron Groom, who also kept out Alasan Ann from point blank range.

There looked like only one team in it until Berkhamsted landed a sucker punch right on half time.

Ryan Frater did superbly to block an attack, but the resulting corner was only half cleared to Cheyce Grant who hit a superb volley past Jamie Head to make it 1-1.

The Comrades were clearly lifted by the goal and came out much more organised and threatening in the second half.

The opening stages saw a flurry of bookings, Gedeon Okito and Lewis Ferrell seeing yellow for AFC, as did the hosts’ Reece Robins.

Christie went close with a shot that was blocked, as Heath made two changes just after the hour mark, Saul Williams and Tom Silford replacing Ann and Nathan Frater.

Midway through the half, Kieran Hamilton missed a golden opportunity for AFC to retake the lead, when a brilliant run saw him evade two defenders but he could only fire straight at Groom.

The game was becoming an open encounter now, ex-Luton midfielder Adam Watkins missing the target when well placed, Hamilton also denied.

Ryan Kinnane saw his header crash against the bar, as Lucas Kirkpatrick and Christie both put chances wide, before Kinnane missed a sitter with five minutes left.

The OD’s, now sitting fourth, are back in action on Saturday when they entertain Welwyn Garden City, kick-off 3pm.

AFC: Head; Longden; Okito; R Frater; McClelland; Carney; Hamilton (Harvey 85); Ferrell; Christie; Ann (Williams 62); N Frater (Silford 63).

Subs not used: Abraham, Austin.