Sports Held By Pitmen: Hednesford Town (H)

by Peter Scherer (Photo: Sarah Middleton)

Mickleover recorded their second score draw of the season on Saturday with a 1-1 draw at home to Hednesford Town.

Starting line-up: 1-Jonathan Hedge 2-Elliott Walker 3-Rhys Dolan; 4-Ryan Wilson 5-James Butler 6-Phil Watt 7-Joe Bateman 8-Mason Warren 9-Elliott Reeves 10-Stuart Beavon 11-Andy Dales. Subs: Callum Chettle, Jahvan Davidson-Miller, Marcus Marshall, Jordan Fankwe, Ethan Mann.

It couldn’t have started better for Sports, when a poor clearance from keeper Gwilliams was picked up by Warren, he found Beavon who left the Hednesford defender flat footed and fired into the roof of the net, 1-0 after only two minutes.

Mickleover continued to push forward and looked much the stronger of the two sides in the first half.

Hednesford managed to get a ball into the area for Ebbutt, but Watt soon cleared any danger and the combined strength with Butler at the back continued to keep any threat under control.

After 10 minutes Dales sought out Warren, who sent Dolan on a telling run down the left. He was close to shooting himself, but Dales final effort went out for a corner.

Hednesford’s one real chance came when a Kyle Bennett free kick found Nathan Cameron’s head, but he just failed to make 100% connection.

It could have been a second for Mickleover after 15 minutes, when a Beavon cross found Reeves effort saved on the line by Gwilliams.

A Warren cross then just failed to connect with Dales on the far post and after 21 minutes Reeves took the ball around the keeper, but the angle proved too tight and his shot hit the side netting.

Warren seemed to be controlling midfield, ably supported by Bateman and Wilson, but Hednesford did manage the occasional break through with Lita and Wilding combining after 25 minutes, but failing to get a final shot in.

A dangerous cross from Dolan was headed away, before Portman got a break for the visitors before his charge was thwarted by Butler.

Walker went into the referees book after 33 minutes for a tackle on Portman, which preceded a late half push from the visitors.

Mickleover had two corners in time added on, with a Butler header going close, but it remained 1-0 at half-time.

Hednesford were more into the game in the second half, with Sports unable to add to their goal tally.

Hedge had a busier time in the second half too, making a couple of saves to keep Mickleover ahead.

But after 69 minutes Todd Parker sent Riley O’Sullivan on a run, he had Walker beaten as the cross was met in the middle by Leroy Lita 1-1.

In the final kick of the game Warren went close with a long range shot just over the bar.

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