Luckless Bungay denied point they deserved

Bungay Town 1, Long Stratton 2

THE Black Dogs had another frustrating day on Saturday. All their best efforts came to nothing as Long Stratton hit a late winner.

Once again Bungay richly deserved at least a point from the game. They played some good football and worked hard throughout, but were once more unable to take their chances.

They remain at the foot of the Anglian Combination Division One table with 10 games left, three points adrift of Poringland Wanderers and four behind Corton, who have both played two fewer games.

Sean Payne returned to the fold and took his place at the heart of the defence. Danny Wilby was again influential in midfield while Dan Shimmon’s crosses always caused Stratton trouble. Russell Tuffs moved up as striker alongside Dan Andrews, who was again unlucky not to score.

Bungay started positively and Tuffs got clear to lob the keeper only for the effort to be cleared for a corner by a covering defender. From the flag-kick Andrews saw his header turned onto a post and out by the keeper.

Stratton took the lead in their first real break after 10 minutes as the home defence stood still and allowed Adam Solley a simple chance to beat Gary Foyster from close range.

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When James Youngman won a corner for Bungay, Shimmon’s kick was turned against his own bar by a defender and a follow-up effort was hacked off the line — appeals that it had crossed the line came to nothing.

Youngman had a chance soon after from a high dropping ball but could not convert.

Andrews got clear down the left only for the keeper to come out to block his shot, but the equaliser the Black Dogs deserved came in the 30th minute. Another corner from Shimmon was headed firmly home by Shaun Whiteman for his first goal for the first team.

Bungay had a bit of luck at last as Stratton beat the offside trap but a shot hit the inside of a post and rebounded across the goal-line and away.

Bungay attacked immediately and Tuffs was just unable to direct his shot on goal as the keeper came out. Then good work by Tuffs and Tom Cole set up Andrews, but his shot from an angle was narrowly wide of the far post.

Early in the second half Youngman’s low cross was grabbed by the keeper at Shimmon’s feet. Then another Shimmon corner caused problems for Stratton and Payne and Andrews had shots blocked on the line before the ball was cleared.

Good work in defence by Steve Batt and Whiteman cut out danger when Stratton attacked before Tuffs brought a good save from the keeper with a snap-shot.

Stratton twice went close in the later stages, but Andrews put a header from Batt’s cross over the bar and then a Shimmon header put Youngman clear, only for the keeper to again be equal to the challenge.

With five minutes left Foyster did well to turn a deflected shot over the bar for a corner, and when the kick came over Ben Cussons scored through a crowded goalmouth to leave the home team and supporters believing the fates are against them this season.

Team: G Foyster, S Batt, S Payne, S Whiteman, D Lowe, J Youngman, D Wilby (C Sartain), T Cole, D Shimmon (D Smith), R Tuffs (D Scriven), D Andrews.

Tomorrow, Bungay visit league leaders Wells Town. Bungay Reserves have no game. The A team entertain Spexhall in the Lowestoft League Cup third round (kick-off 2pm).