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Rovers 3 Gillingham 3

20 October 2018

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Paul Taylor’s first goal for Rovers capped off a thrilling comeback against Gillingham.

Rovers had to come from behind twice in the game, having been 2-0 down after 24 minutes before goals from John Marquis and Mallik Wilks saw them back level.

Max Ehmer scored with two minutes of normal time to go to put the visitors back ahead, before Taylor’s last-gasp effort saw Rovers take home a point.
 
It would be Rovers with the game’s opening chance after four minutes, with Marquis heading just over the Gills’ crossbar following good work down the right from James Coppinger.
 
Yet a bolt from the blue just moments later that saw the visitors take the lead in stunning fashion.
 
A Gills free-kick into the box was cleared away by Ben Whiteman towards half way, with Barry Fuller picking up the loose ball.
 
Fuller took a touch before firing a half-volley on goal from 35 yards out, with the ball going through everyone in front of it before finding the bottom corner.
 
This didn’t stop Rovers however, with Marquis going close to finding an equaliser not long afterwards.
 
He managed to get a flick onto Danny Andrew’s low cross and directed it goalwards, only to see his effort clip the outside of the post.
 
Herbie Kane, on his return to the side following a one-match ban, would be next to try and get Rovers level as he managed to work himself some space in the area following a brilliant break down the right by Matty Blair.
 
Kane twisted and turned to open up room to shoot, however his effort on goal was deflected behind for a corner which would then be claimed by Tomas Holy in the Gills goal.
 
It would be those missed chances that Rovers would be left to rue with the opening period passing the half way point, and the Gills doubled their lead on 24 minutes against the run of play.
 
Tom Eaves collected the ball over on the left-hand side and muscled his way through the challenge of Tom Anderson, and he kept his composure when baring down on goal to curl into the far corner past Marko Marosi, doubling the visitors’ advantage.
 
Marquis was left to continue his personal battle with Holy after the half-hour mark as he raced through on goal, looking to take the ball round the Czech stopper, only to see the Gills man equal to his effort once again.
 
Andrew then caused Holy trouble shortly after with his powerful free-kick from distance, however his superb effort was palmed away by Holy before being cleared by the Gills defence.
 
Andy Butler would have Rovers’ last chance of the half from a Coppinger corner as he rose highest, however he could only look on as he saw his glanced, looping header drift just wide of the far post.
 
After the interval, Rovers would come out firing, and would have a goal back inside six minutes of the second period.
 
A corner from Coppinger was headed down by Butler, with Wilks looking to bundle the ball over the line under pressure from Eaves, only to force the ball into the path of Marquis who poked the ball over the line.
 
Marquis would then almost equalise in bizarre fashion as he intercepted Holy’s attempted clearance, only to see his block go wide.
 
Rovers would have to wait long for the comeback to be complete, as just three minutes later they were back on level terms.
 
Another Coppinger corner was again headed down by Butler, with the defender dragged down onto the floor in the process, however with the ball bouncing around in the area, there was Wilks to steer a header into the corner beyond a Gills defender on the line.
 
Wilks then missed a great chance to put Rovers ahead five minutes later, with Whiteman finding Marquis in space, and the forward crossed for his strike partner, only for Wilks to see his header fly straight into the hands of Holy.
 
Coppinger was next to try his luck as Rovers looked to make their pressure count late on, however after opening up space on the edge of the box to shoot, his driven strike was once again held by Holy.
 
The Gills for all the pressure they faced though still came forward, and they thought they had won it as the game ticked towards 90 minutes, with Callum Reilly’s corner going all the way through to Ehmer who chested the ball down and smashed the ball home.
 
The late drama didn’t stop there however, as Taylor picked the ball up and danced his way through the Gills defence before striking from distance.
 
His effort took a deflection which wrong-footed Holy and flew into the back of the net to get Rovers back level once again.
 
Rovers are back in action at the Keepmoat Stadium on Tuesday night when they face fellow top-six side Sunderland in Sky Bet League One.
 


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