Owls slip back to second place after point from top-of-table tussle

Wednesday left Ipswich with a share of the points after a rollercoaster top-of-the-table clash ended in a 2-2 draw at Portman Road this afternoon.

The first 35 minutes saw Cameron Dawson pull off another penalty save while goals from Michael Smith and George Byers put us 2-0 ahead and showing why we went into the match at the head of division one.

However, third-placed Ipswich were back level after just six minutes of the second half and then dominated before a late Wednesday rally, leaving ourselves disappointed to lose a two-goal lead but pleased to return to S6 with another point against one of our promotion rivals.

With Plymouth winning 3-1 at home to Portsmouth, they go back to the top of league one, two points ahead of us but we still have a game in hand. Ipswich remain in third place, trailing us by six points and having played a game more than ourselves.

Smith missed a good chance for Wednesday after 10 minutes when he fired over from 12 yards before Dawson came to the rescue with his penalty stop eight minutes later.

Ipswich were awarded a spot kick when Wes Burns went down in the box in an off-the-ball incident but the diving Dawson kept out Conor Chaplin’s ‘down the middle’ penalty with his legs.

And the home side were made to pay for the miss on 27 minutes when Smith met Josh Windass’ left-wing cross in excellent fashion, sending a powerful header from eight yards across home keeper Christian Walton and into the far corner of the net.

Seven minutes later it was 2-0 to the Owls, Ipswich failing to clear properly from a Barry Bannan cross and George Byers pouncing to calmly slot the loose ball into the corner of the net from 12 yards.

We looked in control and really should have had a third shortly afterwards. Smith ran clear after sloppy Ipswich defending but his heavy touch took him too wide as he went past keeper Walton and when the ball was reworked, Will Vaulks’ shot was straight at Walton.

A third goal at that stage would have been a huge mountain to climb for Ipswich but, instead, they halved the deficit three minutes before the break when Nathan Broadhead sent an unstoppable 20-yard free kick into the top corner of the net.

Ex-Owl George Hirst then blazed over from close range, with Wednesday claiming a foul on Aden Flint, but the home side were level six minutes into the second period.

Once again, it came from a free kick with Leif Davis’ speculative long-range effort taking a hefty deflection off Byers and ending up in the corner of the net.

In a total reversal of the first half, it was Ipswich who were in charge at this stage and the unmarked Chaplin missed a good chance with a close-range header as Wednesday struggled to break forward.

In a rare attacking threat, we did go close to regaining the lead 15 minutes from time when Flint’s fierce angled drive from inside the box flew just off target before Freddie Ladapo had the last chance for the home side in added time when he shot wide from 10 yards.

The draw means our unbeaten league run stretches to 17 games and Wednesday will be hoping to keep the pressure on at the top with two upcoming home games, against Morecambe on Tuesday evening and then MK Dons next Saturday.

Dawson, Palmer, Iorfa, Flint, Famewo, Johnson, Vaulks, Bannan (Adeniran 88), Byers, Windass (Dele-Bashiru 74), Smith. Unused subs: Stockdale, Brown, Bakinson, Shipston, Fusire.






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