Rivals looking to respond
Our guide to the weekend’s fixtures
Hornchurch v Eastbourne Borough
It has been a mixed week for flu-hit Urchins as they followed a league loss with a cup win.
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Half the team were struggling with a virus in a 3-1 defeat at Staines, where Wayne Gray’s first goal since his return to the Bridge Avenue ranks provided little consolation.
Manager Jimmy McFarlane gave his men as much time as possible to recover before naming a strong starting XI against rivals Billericay in the Essex Senior Cup 72 hours later.
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And the two sides produced an entertaining tie, with three goals in the last seven minutes ensuring it ended all square at 3-3.
Frankie Curley and Tambeson Eyong cancelled out Billericay’s opener before the break, but former Urchin Glenn Poole levelled from the spot in the 83rd minute and the visitors took the lead with normal time almost up.
Lewis Smith forced a penalty shoot-out, though, and Urchins converted all four of their spot-kicks, while Joe Woolley saved from Poole and Alex Osborn.
Eastbourne are without a win in five games, meanwhile, following a last-gasp defeat home defeat at the hands of Sutton last weekend.
Ryman Division 1N Sudbury v Romford
Who can forget Romford’s stunning 4-0 success in Suffolk two years ago?
Richard Oxby, Toran Senghore and Andy Edmunds (2) netted on a memorable day for Paul Martin’s men, who looked set for a repeat last term.
On-loan striker Ellis Skidmore struck twice in seven minutes on his debut, before the home side hit back for a share of the spoils.
And Boro let a two-goal lead slip last weekend against Soham Town Rangers at Ship Lane.
Paul Clayton and Nick Reynolds netted late in the first half to put them on top, but the visitors replied with three goals in a 13-minute spell after the restart to take the points back to Cambridgeshire.
Sudbury, meanwhile, had to settle for a point in a 2-2 draw at lowly Waltham Forest and lie three points behind Boro, with a game in hand.