Late Griffin strike extends Saints’ unbeaten run

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Charlie Griffin smashed in a dramatic late equaliser to extend Brackley Town’s unbeaten start to the season in a highly-entertaining 2-2 draw at Gloucester City.

Saints, who went into the game top of the Conference North table following a 3-0 win over Stalybridge Celtic at the weekend, looked on course for victory when Steve Diggin blasted home but City hit back with two goals in four minutes.

However, Griffin popped up four minutes from time to rescue a point for Saints and extend their unbeaten run to eight matches.

Gloucester started quickest, with Will Morford going close while Izak Reid’s long-range effort deflected wide.

Morford continued to cause havoc and was unlucky to clip the bar with a looping header before Tom Webb spurned a glorious chance for the hosts in a goalless half.

Saints then struck when, just two minutes into the second period, the in-form Diggin turned quickly and unleashed a bullet into the top corner.

The home side’s response was impressive, however, and with 20 minutes remaining, Gloucester deservedly drew level as Webb set up Edwards who headed in to breach the Saints defence for only the second time this season.

The goal spurred the hosts on and Billy Turley was called into action to keep Brackley level but he could do nothing about Scott Wilson’s nonchalant finish that put Gloucester into a surprise lead.

Brackley threw everything forward in search of an equaliser as Eddie Nisevic and Diggin both went close before Griffin smashed home a Glenn Walker cross to pull Saints level.

Both sides looked for a winner, and Saints almost snatched an unlikely victory but Diggin was denied by a superb Mike Green save in the dying seconds, bringing an end to an enthralling contest.

Saints drop to second, a point behind leaders Hednesford, ahead of a trip to Harrogate Town this weekend.

Meanwhile, in the FA Cup second qualifying round, Brackley will play Evo-Stik NPL Division One South side Gresley FC at St James’ Park on September 28.

Brackley: Turley, Cartwright (Nisevic 78), McDonald, Odhiambo, Sharpe, Austin, Reid (Story 78), Solkhon, Mulligan (Griffin 78), Diggin, Walker

Attendance: 208