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Match Reports

Kabamba Scores As Pools Draw With Orient

9 February 2019

Nicke Kabamba Mark Fletcher (Shutter Press)
Nicke Kabamba celebrates his goal against Leyton Orient.

Nicke Kabamba got his third goal in as many games to help Pools pick up a point on an entertaining afternoon at The Super 6 Stadium.

It was a real hard-working performance from both sides, who gave everything for the full match to share the spoils in this National League fixture.

The game started at a high tempo, with Nicke Kabamba looking a handful up front again for Pools as Craig  Hignett’s side started on the front foot.

Pools put some real pressure on the Orient box just before the quarter-hour mark with the visitors struggling to clear from a Josh Hawkes corner.

Luke Molyneux countered with real pace down the left shortly after, opening things right up for Pools. His cross in for Hawkes was intercepted by the defender but the home side were showing positive signs.

But it was Orient who took the lead on 21 minutes; after a spell of pressure around the area, the ball fell to Jobi McAnuff on the edge of the box and his low shot through a crowd took a big deflection to wrong-foot Scott Loach and it rolled into the far corner of the net.

The visitors showed more confidence following the goal and a cross into the area from James Brophy just missed the head of Matt Harrold who was waiting in the box.

Pools did see plenty of the ball themselves in the remainder of the half and Ryan Donaldson tried his luck at an equaliser following a corner, the skipper picked up possession just inside the box and fired low through a crowd but his effort was held by Dean Brill.

Michael Raynes put in an important block to bring another Orient attack while a long throw from Charlie Lee caused problems for Pools. The throw was flicked on by Jamie Turley, catching Scott Loach out and the ball made its way to the far post where Macauley Bonne could only scrape it wide under pressure from Donaldson.

With the half deep into added time and Orient ready to take their lead into the break, Pools grabbed an equaliser.

On-loan striker Nicke Kabamba made it three goals in as many games as he finished well past Brill to make it 1-1.

Buoyed by the leveller, Pools came out brightly after the break and put some early pressure on the visitors’ goal.

Liam Noble, on in place of Luke Molyneux late in the first half, sent a deep freekick into the box early in the second half, which was held by Brill, while Luke James volleyed wide from close range shortly after.

Pools had a great chance to take the lead on 58 minutes after real determination from Luke James won his team a penalty kick. James powered forward into the area from inside his own half only to be dragged over by Joe Widdowson inside the box.

Noble stepped up to take the penalty kick but saw Dean Brill go the right way and the Orient keeper made the save to keep things at 1-1.

Pools looked in confident mood though and kept going at Orient and when Noble picked out Donaldson with a lovely pass, it set off a move down the right that finished with a drilled effort on goal by Hawkes that was again held by Brill.

Scott Loach was in action on 70 minutes when he got down to pull off a great save to deny Jobi McAnuff a second goal after the winger had found himself in shooting range.

As Orient enjoyed their own spell of pressure, Myles Anderson got in well to block a shot from Craig Clay.

And Anderson was involved in the attack shortly after, bravely going in to try and pounce on a poor clearance to shoot on goal. But the defender was flattened by an Orient player and, while Pools may have been looking for another penalty, Orient picked up the freekick.

Pools showed some determined defending in the closing minutes to keep the visitors at bay, with a couple of big blocks by Raynes, another by Cunningham and a good save by Loack keeping things level.

With both teams giving everything, it was an energetic finish to a game that finished 1-1, with both teams having worked hard to earn their point.

Full Time: Pools 1 Leyton Orient 1  

Attendance: 3297 (439 Leyton Orient)

Booked: Molyneux (39), Donaldson (90)

Pools: Loach, Donaldson, Kioso, Raynes, Anderson (Cunningham 87), Amos, Featherstone, Molyneux (Noble 43), Hawkes, Kabamba, James.
Subs Not Used: Kitching, Hawkins, Muir.

Leyton Orient: Brill, Widdowson, McAnuff, Clay, Bonne, Judd, Happe, Brophy, Harrold (Alabi 68), Lee (Lawless 81), Turley.
Subs Not Used: Sargeant, Sotiriou, Shadrach.

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