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Waltham Abbey 3 Dereham Town 3: Magpies let lead slip again

17:03 20 November 2016

Dereham had to settle for a point after once again throwing away a commanding lead, writes Rene Kendal.

A week after surrendering a three-goal lead at home to high-flying Cheshunt, the Magpies were at it again.

Dereham were 3-0 up by half-time, but Waltham Abbey pulled one back 11 minutes into the second half and then completed the comeback with two goals in the final 10 minutes.

Dereham could have been ahead in the first minutes, when Vadim Constandachi nearly caught out home keeper Lewis Lockyer with a long-range shot, which just missed the target. Rhys Logan’s drive also struck the underside of the bar.

So it was no surprise when Joe Gatting netted Jackson Ramm’s cross from close range in the 13th minute to put the visitors ahead.

As the pressure continued keeper Lockyer saved Logan’s low drive by his near post before Gatting guided Logan’s centre wide from point-blank range.

It was 2-0 on 26 minutes – Beaumont’s free-kick from the right was delivered to the near post where Jay Eastoe-Smith glanced a header past Lockyer.

Dereham were dominating the half and added to their tally in the 43rd minute when Beaumont fed Gatting who beat Lockyer with a firm diagonal drive.

Waltham needed a quick goal after the break and Eastoe-Smith made a vital block to deny Ryan Blackman at the expense of a corner. The ball was played back into the box where Billy Holland headed home to reduce the deficit in the 56th minute.

The hosts began to enjoy more possession and peg the Magpies back and on 80 minutes were firmly back in the game as Robbins headed home Macauley Joynes’ in-swinging centre to set up a tense finish.

The comeback was completed three minutes from time when Gregory Pearson scored.

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