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Watch Jamie Cureton score a brilliant free kick to help Bishop's Stortford earn a 2-2 home draw with Bowers & Pitsea in the BetVictor Isthmian League, Premier Division




Bishop's Stortford twice came from behind to rescue a 2-2 draw at home to Bowers & Pitsea on Saturday thanks to the goals of Jamie Cureton.

The 44-year-old player-manager scored a free kick before smashing home from close range as the Blues picked up their first BetVictor Isthmian League, Premier Division point of the new year.

The match saw Jack Thomas register his 100th Stortford appearance against a team for which his brother James also reached a century of games recently.

Matthew Campbell-Mhlope was rewarded with his first start after a lively cameo off the bench in New Year's Day's 2-1 home loss to Kingstonian, and he nearly opened the scoring early on when he struck the far post from the corner of the box before Cureton nearly scored from the rebound.

From the resulting corner, Campbell-Mhlope crossed to Cureton, who headed straight at Bowers goalkeeper Callum Chafer from close range.

The Blues continued to create chances and Campbell-Mhlope found David Manu, but the winger could not get his second Blues goal as he somehow missed the target altogether.

But, after dominating the first half, the Blues went into the break a goal down due to a lapse in concentration which allowed Bradley Warner in behind Ryan Henshaw to smash low past Fred Burbidge.

After Lewis Manor missed an opportunity to put the visitors two up from close range, another chance for the visitors went begging when Warner could not find a team-mate and the ball was scrambled clear.

Then came three goals in 19 minutes, starting with Cureton's free kick. From the edge of the box, he left Chafer rooted to the spot.

Max Cornhill restored the away side's lead by heading home unmarked from six yards out from a long free kick, before a left-wing corner hit the near post and bounced away from the Blues' goal.

Substitute Lawrence Hammond had an instant impact on the match, cutting open the defence to play Cureton through on goal in the right channel, and the boss went past the sliding defender before shooting with the outside of his right foot past Chafer.

There was a late shout for a Bowers penalty, but Jayden Sweeney won the ball and the referee gave a free kick for simulation.

Stortford: Burbidge, Wescott, Thomas, Robbins, Henshaw, Campbell-Mhlope (Mason 71), Cureton, Manu (Hammond 83), Sweeney, Haines, Barnwell. Not used: Baxter, McClenaghan, L Johnson.

Bowers & Pitsea: Chafer, Hine, Stephen, Cornhill, Manor, Leahy, Monville (Trendall 70), Sartin, Thomas (Osifuwa 67), Warner, Dicks. Not used: Gardner, Collins, Baker.

Attendance: 338.


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