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Match Reports

Heartbreak for the 23s

27 April 2018

It was heartbreak for the Owls Under-23s on Friday afternoon as they narrowly missed out on retaining their PDL2 North crown.

A point was all that was needed in the season finale against Burnley at Hillsborough to finish top of the table.

But the Clarets won 2-1 and to add to the woes, results elsewhere meant the Owls slipped to third in the table, one place outside of the play-off positions.

The afternoon started in the best possible way from a Wednesday persuasion as Preslav Borukov netted inside the first three minutes to steal a march at the top.

And the lead was so nearly doubled 15 minutes in when Borukov’s cushioned volley came back off the woodwork from Fraser Preston’s accurate delivery.

A minute later, Burnley notched the equaliser from their first meaningful attack with Rob Harker sending a bullet header into the Kop net.

The setback did not disrupt Wednesday’s flow as Borukov connected fiercely with Jack Stobbs’ cutback moments later but the strike was well blocked by Burnley’s backline.

Ten minutes before the interval, though, the game swung in favour of the visitors as Tinashe Chakwana swept home inside the box from a long punt upfield.

Desperately needing a goal to change the picture at the top, Wednesday were positive in their approach from the restart.

And they were almost rewarded in the 75th minute when Ben Hughes’ looping header was cleared off the line at the last having beaten Conor Mitchell in the Clarets goal.

The pressure and frustration continued as substitute Jordan Lonchar looked to have levelled, latching on to a bobbling ball in the box but his strike slammed against the crossbar in stoppage time.

Throwing bodies forward in search of an equaliser, Wednesday left the door open at the back and Chakwana went through to win his side a penalty after going down under a challenge from Dan Wallis.

The same man stepped up to kill the game but Wallis made a tremendous save to atone for the foul.

But try as they might in the last few seconds, the battling Wednesday youngsters could not find a way through as a positive campaign for the 23s ended in frustration.


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