FRUSTRATED Portland earned their third successive draw after they were denied victory by a 94th minute equaliser at Bonnymead Park

The Blues had a depleted squad in light of 10 players becoming unavailable for the match, with Ross Doidge suspended after picking up two yellow cards in the islanders’ previous league match.

Portland boss Simon Browne said: “It is another draw, it looks like we are the draw experts in the league at the moment.”

The Blues could only name one substitute and Browne hopes that this week the squad availability will be better for their next match at Fareham Town.

Amesbury took the lead after five minutes from a cross to the far post which was headed back across goal and the ball was poked in by Craig Wheeler.

Sam Buckler then levelled for the Blues with a bullet header into the top corner from a Jamie Beasley corner five minutes later.

Beasley thought he had scored later on in the first half when the scores were still level but it was ruled out for offside.

Alex Godfrey then put Portland back in front after 40 minutes with a lovely volley from 25 yards out that went over the keeper who was off his line.

Browne said: “It was a great finish from Godfrey, it was a great bit of awareness to give us the lead.

In the second half, Godfrey came close to extending the lead with a half volley from 30 yards which bounced off the crossbar while Lewis Clarke saw a header go inches wide of a post.

The equaliser came in the 94th minute when Portland gave the ball away and Amesbury put the ball into the box and the ball was struck into the net by Dan Beccles.

Browne said: “That’s three draws on the bounce where I could make a pretty convincing argument that we should have won them.

“At the end of the day, we didn’t and we have to dust ourselves off and move on.

“We’ve got a point out of the game but I just think had we been a bit more streetwise in not giving the ball away in a silly area in the last minute we would be talking about a win and three points.”

The result leaves Portland in 10th with 29 points in the Sydenhams Wessex Premier Division, while their opponents fall to 21st in the table with 14 points.

The Blues travel to Fareham Town on Saturday.

Blues: Lillington, Bessant, Zima, Butcher, Buckler, Halloran, Mitchell, McKechnie, Clarke, Godfrey, Beasley, Sharpe. Sub not used: Hankin


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