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Match Reports

Mansfield Town v Cheltenham Town

13 December 2014

Full-time: Mansfield 1, Robins 1

Zack Kotwica’s superb late strike rescued a point for Cheltenham Town at Mansfield Town.

The teenager joined the action in the 72nd minute, with Paul Buckle’s men trailing 1-0, but he arrowed a perfectly placed shot into the top right corner with three minutes left to make it two draws from two League Two games for the new boss.

The Robins created the first opening in the sixth minute when Craig Braham-Barrett’s long throw reached Byron Harrison, who turned sharply before directing a shot wide.

Buckle made one change to the team for his first away match in charge, with Joe Hanks replacing Jason Taylor in the centre of midfield.

Cheltenham’s defence were forced to work hard early on, with Jack Deaman having his work cut out to contain winger Junior Brown, but Trevor Carson’s goal was well protected.

Terry Gornell forced Dimitar Evtimov into a low stop at his near post in the 24th minute before crashing a second effort into the side netting.

Carson had to dive low to his right to fall on a shot by Chris Clements in the 27th minute, but Cheltenham finished the half strongly.

Kane Ferdinand was denied by Evtimov’s block before his follow-up attempt was cleared off the line by Luke Waterfall in the 44th minute.

And in the first minute of time added on, Evtimov parried a powerful strike from Ferdinand behind for a corner as it remained goalless at the break.

A burst into the box resulted in a shot from Junior Brown which was deflected over the bar by a lunging Deaman.

The resulting corner was headed over the bar by Vadaine Oliver, but the on-loan Crewe Alexandra man beat Carson with a perfectly placed shot from 30 yards to put the Stags in front after 55 minutes.

Buckle responded with a double substitution, sending on Omari Sterling-James and Andy Haworth in place of Matt Richards and Raffaele De Vita in the 65th minute.

Kotwica was also introduced from the bench, replacing Byron Harrison, but Cheltenham struggled to find a breakthrough.

In the 87th minute Kotwica’s screamer gave Evtimov no chance whatsoever as Cheltenham returned home with a share of the spoils.

Mansfield Town: Evtimov; Sutton, Waterfall, Tafazolli, Freeman (Beevers 46); Lambe (R Taylor 80), Heslop, Clements, Brown; Bell (Bingham 88); Oliver. Subs not used: Rhead, McGuire, Palmer, Bishop.

Cheltenham Town: Carson; Deaman, Brown, M Taylor, Braham-Barrett; Ferdinand, Hanks, Richards (Sterling-James 65), De Vita (Haworth 65); Harrison (Kotwica 72), Gornell.  Subs not used: Gould, Black, Williams, Dale.

Referee: Chris Sarginson.

Attendance: 3,324 (155 away).

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