Heartache for Leiston as they see their play-offs vanish... With just four minutes left in the season
Leiston’s play off dreams were shattered as a late goal from Bobby Devyne denied Glenn Driver’s side the win they needed to make the Ryman Premier play offs for the first time, the game finishing 1-1
Devyne struck with just four minutes left as Leiston looked like they may well be heading into those play-offs after Gareth Heath’s header put them the north Suffolk side ahead at the break.
It was heartbreak for Driver and his team, who have enjoyed a terrific season, with Cup runs and spending much of the season pushing for automatic promotion.
However, that has all come to nothing, but for the Victory Road club it has still been a fantastic ride.
Leiston produced a strong first half display attacking fourth placed Enfield Town from the outset.
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Matt Blake headed over an early chance as did Joe Jefford while a fantastic chip from Jack Ainsley only just cleared the home bar.
Enfield provided clever build up play but lacked a final effort but it was the visitors, prompted by the excellent Adeyinka Cole in midfield, that looked the more likely and went ahead in the final minute of the half. Heath’s looping header across Nathan McDonald sending the travelling fans into raptures.
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The second half saw a pair of half chances from Matt Blake but it was Enfield in the ascendancy and although Leiston stood firm in holding Enfield off, they were withdrawing further and further towards their own goal and they were punished four minutes from time.
Unmarked substitute Devyne side-footing home from close-range from a left wing cross from fellow substitute Samir Bihmoutine.
A cruel finale for the visitors who had spent almost the entire season in the top five.
In the end it is Havant & Waterlooville who are celebrating promotion to Step 2.
They drew away at Kingstonian, while Bognor Regis saw their hopes of automatic promotion end when Met Police equalised in their game with just 19 minutes left – the Rocks on their way to promotion at that stage.
Dulwich Hamlet, Wingate & Finchley and Enfield Town join Bognor in the play-offs, which take place on Thursday, with Bognor at home to Wingate, Dulwich at home to Enfield.