Ross Durrant.
Ross Durrant.

Elton Ngwatala’s late header ended Boston United’s clean sheet record.

The Pilgrims looked to be holding out for their fourth-straight shut-out, only for the Kidderminster striker to grab an 87th-minute winner and keep the Harriers’ title hopes alive.

With the clock ticking down Andre Brown’s effort struck the Boston crossbar and looped up and back into play, where Ngwatala reacted first to nod home almost on the goalline.

It was a sickener for the Pilgrims, who had followed their gameplan to the letter.

United’s last contest against the Harriers at Aggborough came in November 2004, when an Andy Kirk treble helped the Pilgrims secure a 4-0 victory.

There was no repeat result 13 years later, the side going within a whisker of making it four straight games without conceding.

After securing safety with a 3-0 drubbing of Telford on Saturday, Adam Murray hinted that squad rotation would be key to a successful Easter schedule.

And true to his word, he made four changes prior to kick off at Aggborough, Ben Gordon, Josh Robinson, Alex Simmons and Colby Bishop returning to the starting XI.

Harry Vince and Louis Briscoe dropped to the bench, with Nat Brown out injured and Mani Dieseruvwe ineligible to face his parent club.

Boston showed their promotion-chasing hosts plenty of respect in the opening exchanges as they defended deep and looked to the pace of Jay Rollins and Simmons to offer opportunities on the break.

Indeed, Harriers’ first sight of goal didn’t arrive until the 29th minute, Daniel Nti striking on the turn and seeing his effort drift wide of Ross Durrant’s top corner.

The Boston keeper then made sure that Tyrone Williams’ cross didn’t sneak in at his near post with a body block.

Durrant was called upon to make his first real save minutes after the re-start, holding onto Nti’s hopeful 25 yarder.

Gordon came close to edging United in front with their first opportunity of the afternoon as the clock ticked towards the hour mark.

Slipped in by Adam Chapman, the angle was against him, but the winger forced Sam Hornby into a close-range save.

Kidderminster should have taken the lead when Manny Sanoupe latched onto a loose ball and sprinted from his own half into the Pilgrims’ penalty area, but Durrant stood tall and dernied the substitute with his chest.

But with three minutes left they finally managed their breakthrough.

KIDDERMINSTER: Hornby, Ezewele (Williams 33), Francis-Angol, Croasdale, Lowe, Tunnicliffe, Nti, McQuilkin, Ironside (Brown 76), Ngwatala, Austin (Sonupe 61); Subs (not used): Knights, Truslove.

UNITED: Durrant, Thomas, Yeomans, Gordon (Briscoe 74), Batchelor, Robinson, Chapman, Simmons (Vince 51), Rollins, Bishop, Broadhead (Hawley 90); Subs (not used): Clarke, Gatter.

Ref: Darren Strain.

Att: 2,056 (107).