Report: Berwick Rangers 2-2 Annan Athletic

Bald set for 6-8 weeks out with a suspected broken wrist.

Bald set for 6-8 weeks out with a suspected broken wrist.

Berwick returned to league action after last week’s Scottish Cup quarter-final against Hibs, but came up with a result that reflected the team’s fortunes throughout the season as visitors Annan came from two goals down to snatch a point.

Andy Russell grabbed his 10th goal for Berwick in first half stoppage time, finishing after latching on to Darren Lavery’s pass before doubling the advantage from close range in the 51st minute.

But Annan replied a minute later through Josh Todd and substitute Junior Ogen claimed a point for the visitors with a 77th minute header.

Following last week’s quarter-final, Colin Cameron returned to the starting line-up in place of Lee Currie, while Scott Maxwell and Darren Lavery came in for Ross Drummond and Ross Gray.

After a nervy opening period from two out of form sides, unsurprisingly it took a mistake for the first real chance to come as Russell intercepted a short back pass from Steven Swinglehurst but couldn’t pick his spot in time and the shot was blocked.

Lavery then had a shot turned away by Jordan Hart and a well worked move involving David Gold and Russell ended with Paul Willis shooting straight at the keeper.

In the 20th minute, there was a five minute delay in proceedings following an aerial collision between Martin McNiff and Billy Bald from an Annan free-kick. Both players were substituted with stopper Bald sidelined for six-eight weeks with a suspected broken wrist.

Michael Andrews slotted into goal and had to be alert within minutes to tip a Peter Weatherson header over the bar, while Maxwell weaved his way forward and shot narrowly wide from 25 yards.

Kerr Young and Jonny Fairbairn both had great chances within seconds of each other from a Maxwell corner and, in the fourth minute of first half stoppage time, the ‘Gers had their opener when Lavery fed Russell who finished well into the far corner.

Six minutes after the break, Russell had his second with a real poacher’s effort. Lavery again played in Steven Notman, whose shot across goal was parried into the path of the striker who was left with the easiest of finishes.

Annan hit back immediately though when Todd found himself in space on the right side of the box and fired a measured half volley past Andrews into the far corner.

Willis fired a 20-yard free-kick inches past the post and Russell went equally as close with a sweetly struck volley from the edge of the area.

Weatherson again threatened in the air with a header over the bar before substitute Ogen equalised 13 minutes from time – three minutes after coming on – with a free header from an Annan free-kick on the right hand side of the box.

Russell flicked over at the near post after a low cross from Lavery as Berwick tried to grab a winner and in stoppage time, the striker was caught in two minds in the box and shot wide with substitute Lee Currie well placed for a tap in.