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Portadown rubbish reports of Braniff Windsor deal

By Victor Gordon

Portadown 1 Ballinamallard 0: Portadown moved to dispel speculation that transfer listed star player Kevin Braniff is on the verge of leaving the club.

The club's official Twitter account denied rumours of a switch to Linfield after the team registered their first win in five games.

The Twitter post said: "The club can confirm that contrary to reports in the media Kevin Braniff will not be signing for Linfield."

With manager Ronnie McFall in England to attend a funeral, Emmet Friars second-half header gave the Ports a 1-0 win over Ballinamallard Untied for their first victory since early December.

Portadown had two early sniffs at goal through Gary Twigg and Sean Mackle. Mallards keeper Alvin Rouse got down low to his right to deny Twigg and Mackle's effort slid just past.

Midway through the half Mackle had two doses of bad luck – firstly when Danny Keohane kicked a great effort off the line after which Rouse palmed an angled shot onto the crossbar.

Former Ports striker Richard Lecky could have scored the opener for the Mallards but his header was straight at Miskelly.

The game got the goal it desperately needed on 53 minutes when Friars rose high above the Mallard defence to meet a Chris Casement corner and give Rouse no chance as the ball hit the net.

Portadown: Miskelly, Casement, O'Hara, Breen, Mackle, Murray, McStay (Mouncey 78 mins), McCafferty, Twigg (McMahon 90 mins), Barton (Rooney 31 mins), Friars. Subs- Brennan, Judge.

Ballinamallard UNITED: Rouse, Keohane, Stafford, Kee, Cashel, Hutchinson, Lecky (McManus 79 mins), N Beacom, Campbell, Martin (Sheridan 72 mins), Crilly. Subs: Crawford, Currie, C Beacom.

Referee: Ian McNabb (Bangor).

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