Potter works his magic as Whitton United hold promoted Haverhill Borough
- Credit: Archant
Promoted Haverhill Borough will play in the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division next season having concluded their campaign with a 1-1 draw at Whitton United, in their final First Division game.
They have finished in the top three promotion places which is the culmination of a fine season’s work, although they were disappointingly beaten by Crane Sports in the Suffolk Senior Cup Semi-Final.
In contrast, Whitton will be delighted with their mid-table position, with a final game to come, following much turmoil during a season that has seen three managers come and go, before the experienced Steve Jay took charge and brought some much-needed stability. The match promised much in the opening half but petered out in the closing stages, referee Chris Hastings showing two red cards.
The visitors threatened in the early stages but Whitton’s under-18s keeper Joe Potter, playing only his second senior game, kept his side afloat with three excellent saves.
Firstly Ryan Phillips fastened on to a long clearance before firing low, but the youngster made a point-blank save. Two minutes later, Rory Bone struck a fierce shot that saw the keeper, fully extended, diving to his left to save.
Potter then produced a magnificent reaction save, after skipper Craig Pruden’s inch-perfect cross into box had been met with a powerful header from player-manager Martin Westcott.
In between Potter’s heroics, Matt Percy crossed and visiting ‘keeper Paul Walker parried the ball invitingly to the feet of James Burnett who missed the rebound.
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Whitton went in front on 17 minutes when James Watling’s short corner saw a subsequent ball from Niall McPhillips played the into the box and Harry Wales headed home.
The second half was a scrappy affair that saw an equaliser in the 52nd minute when a right-wing cross produced an excellent header from Casey Phillips.
The same player went close when heading Ryan Swallow’s cross just wide, whilst at the other end Franco Mallardo’s run into the right channel and ensuing cross just eluded James Watling at the far post.
The late dismissals of Adam Singh (Whitton) and Luke Clarke (‘Borough’) seemed harsh but a draw was a fair result.