By Anwar U. Larry from the Accra Sports Stadium
Accra Hearts of Oak played a pulsating 3-3 draw game with Aduana Stars on Wednesday.
Winful Cobbinah, Thomas Abbey, and Kwame Kizito were on the score-sheet with each cancelling goals from Daniel Darkwa, Derrick Sasraku, and Nathaniel Asamoah respectively to earn Hearts a hard fought point.
The Phobians were denied two clear penalty decisions by center referee Prince Amoah who underperformed in the best game of the season so far.
A six-goal thriller was kicked off with Daniel Darkwah's deflected long range effort looping over Benjamin Mensah in as early as the seventh minute of action.
But Cobbinah scored a better goal six minutes later with a snapshot that flew past Stephen Adams before he could even flinch a muscle.
However, Hearts were undone when a defensive mishap between two center-backs allowed Sasraku to pounce on the ball before expertly planting home past goalkeeper Mensah.
Coach Nuttall's side responded admirably to the setback, pulling level five minutes into the second half through skipper Abbey, who controlled with his chest before accelerating and applying a low finish shot past Stephen Adams.
Hearts were getting closer and closer, but they were hit hard again when another error in defense allowed Nathaniel Asamoah to steal the ball and put Aduana back in the lead.
Lanky striker Kizito was not to be left out of the goal-harvest and his endeavor was rewarded when he towered over goalkeeper Adams to restore parity in the 83rd minute.
The Phobians thought they would be given a lifeline when Patrick Razak's shot came off the flailing arm of an Aduana defender but referee Amoah strangely pointed for a corner kick.
Hearts pushed forward again but the center referee criminally failed to point to the spot when Abbey was slammed to the ground by a high foot from Emmanuel Akuoko.
Aduana's substitute goalkeeper Gordon Yeboah proved extremely stubborn, saving and thwarting Fatawu Mohammed, Abbey and Cobbinah, to earn the visitors a point against the Phobians.
The point earned from the game leaves Hearts still in third-place and four points adrift Aduana.
HEARTS XI vs. Aduana: Benjamin Mensah, Fatawu Mohammed, Richard Akrofi, Robin Gnagne, Vincent Atingah, Leonard Tawiah, Patrick Razak, Samudeen Ibrahim, Kwame Kizito, Winful Cobbinah (c)
Unused substitutes: Evans Gbeti, Robert Addo, Anthony Nimo, Paul Acquah, Malik Akowuah, Cosmos Dauda, Agbashie Dotse
Booked: Thomas Abbey
Aduana XI vs Hearts: Stephen Adams (Gordon Yeboah), Nàná Afriyie (Richard Mpong), Abdul Rasheed, Wahab Adams, Emmanuel Akuoko (c), Elvis Opoku, Sam Adams, Noah Martey, Nathaniel Asamoah (Bright Adjei), Derrick Sasraku, Daniel Darkwah
Match Referee: Prince Amoah
Man of the Match: Samudeen Ibrahim