A good sized crowd of 88, watched Henley battle back to take a point in a 1-1 draw against bogey side East Bergholt.

Henley pressed from the off, but with strikers Field and Watling absent, Bruce was often left ploughing a lonely furrow up front. It was Bergholt who had the best effort of the 1st half, coming close when Heathcote’s effort after 12 minutes crashed back off the foot of the post. Other than both keepers making decent stops from longer range free kicks, there was little of note in the opening half, both sides grinding out a tough midfield battle and both defences holding firm, seeing the scoreboard remaining untroubled at HT.

Again in the 2nd half Henley had the majority of possession, but failed to find that killer ball and it was Bergholt who took the lead after 66 minutes. Following a freekick from the edge of the box, King swivelled to fire home, the ball just out of Dixon’s reach to make it 1-0. If anything, this served to jolt Henley into action, as the visitors turned it up, looking for the equaliser. Their chance came after 75 minutes, when Cowan raced into the box and was adjudged to have been brought down, a definite case of “seen them given” as opposed to “stonewall”. A point Bergholt Captain Bibby made vociferously and at considerable length before being sinbinned for his protests. Bruce held his nerve, remaining ice cool during the interminable delay, before smashing home the spot kick for the equaliser and 1-1.

Henley did their best to make the most of the man advantage, Cowan’s effort going inches wide, but it was Bruce who came closest to finding the winner, his header from Ablitt’s cross, hitting the bar late on. But it was not to be and the game finished 1-1, overall a fair reflection of the commitment and effort expended by both sides.

I cannot recall Henley ever winning at Gandish Road, indeed Bergholt are consistently our bogey side, today, yet again, proving to be no exception, however with our home victory earlier in the season, this is the only time they’ve not beaten us at least once in a season. Both sides had players missing, but both dug deep and gave their all, with a draw the fair result. For Henley it was Cowan who drew the Ultra’s vote for MOTM, with his usual all action, box to box, performance.