Jan 30 2013 By Jon Batham
Dave Anderson Image 2
RYMAN PREMIER LEAGUE
Harrow Borough 2 Metropolitan Police 3
HARROW Borough sunk deeper into the relegation mire after suffering the equivalent of a mugging at the hands of Metropolitan Police last night.
For 80 minutes Dave Anderson’s (pictured) men were the better of two sides high on endeavour if low on quality only to crack defensively and hand victory to the men from Imber Court.
Borough remain third from bottom having now played more games than all their relegation-threatened rivals.
Rob Wolleaston was a late withdrawal through injury, while Shaun Lucien was relegated to the bench with Juan Onieva given his first start up front.
The new man made a poor start losing the ball on the right on five minutes and when the cross came in Charlie Collins fired narrowly wide.
Playing against a strong wind Borough offered the visitors little else in the early exchanges and threatened themselves when Gary Jones’ free-kick was turned behind.
The next set piece saw Borough grab the lead. Jones looked set to shoot 25 yards out but touched the ball right to Frankie Merrifield who struck a ferocious shot into the far corner off the underside of the bar.
Jon-Jo Bates almost added a second with a header from Onieva’s cross, while at the other end Police were within a whisker of a leveller with a Billy Crook strike off the outside of the near post.
Ross Fitzsimons was then almost undone by a free-kick taken from the opposition’s half, fumbling before grabbing it at the second attempt.
Police were out early for the second half but it was the hosts with the wind at their backs who started the brighter Charles Ofusu-Hene forcing a smart low save from Jamie Butler.
However Police, who had mustered just a weak header in terms of shots on target levelled on 59 minutes, with a set piece again the source.
Ty Smith hit the ball well enough but Palace loanee Fitzsimons went to punch and saw the ball sail over his head and underneath the bar.
Emmanuel Akokhia replaced Onieva with 25 minutes left and Borough regained the lead shortly afterwards with another set piece. Police failed to deal with the delivery from the left and when it dropped to Danny Leech he struck it high into the net.
Ofusu-Hene was close to a third with another low shot well parried by Butler, but eight horrendous minutes then undid all the hosts’ good work.
First Jones dwelt on the ball in midfield only to have his pocket picked and with the defence wrong-footed David Knight raced clear to slot past the advancing Fitzsimons.
The left back almost atoned for his error four minutes later after Bates was fouled 25 yards out curling a delicious free-kick over the wall and against the bar with Butler groping at thin air.
In a bout of tit for tat Knight struck the base of the post with four minutes left and two minutes later the hosts were left in tatters as Police found a winner.
Jones, still trying to make amends for the earlier howler was caught up-field and when the cross came in from the right Craig Watkins ensured another fruitless night for the men of Earlsmead.