Ashton & Backwell earn a precious point

PUBLISHED: 11:02 11 April 2018

Picture: Terry Ife

Picture: Terry Ife

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Ashton & Backwell picked up an important point at home to Devizes Town.

Ashton & Backwell 2

Devizes Town 2

The Stags entered this match in search of vital league points and came away with just one in a hard-fought draw.

Devizes took the lead in the 12th minute when Town won their first corner and met by the unchallenged Jamie Walters whose powerful header into the top corner gave the Red and Whites the lead.

Things did not improve when eight minutes later the visitors won a free kick resulting from a Read foul. Brigham’s powerful kick ricocheted off the wall, fell to Daniel 20 yards out.

His shot was only parried by Coombes and Slater snapped up the loose ball to loop it into the net to make it 2-0.

The home side hit back 10 minutes from the interval when Uppington advanced down the right before unleashing a perfect pass to meet the advancing Manning’s head in the box.

The goal injected more urgency into the Stags and Shearer’s great turn and shot on 44 minutes forced a good save from Walters in the away goal.

After the break, Shearer was withdrawn, feeling groggy from a bang to the head, Conor Biggins replacing. His introduction, though, added more pace and menace to the Stags’ front line, troubling the Town defence all half.

Six minutes after the restart it was all square. A brilliant Bishop cross from adjacent to the dug-outs found Manning in space to net his second with an unchallenged header.

Bishop was instrumental too in maintaining parity in his own box when his pressure forced Daniel to head wide from an Enderby cross on 57 minutes.

The energy and work rate for the Stags was immense as they tried to get the winner. The first chances came on 68 minutes, Biggins crossed into the box, with Uppington’s shot was blocked by Walters, then Manning tried for his hat-trick.

A corner gave Biggins the chance to supply Read, his powerful header skimming over the bar. Then with seven minutes remaining, Hardidge pushed the ball through to Manning, his 30-yarder just saved by Walters.

It was not all one-way traffic though and the Red and Whites could have taken the three points. Ten minutes from time a Town free kick was met by Jamie Walters whose powerful shot from the edge of the box was well saved by Coombes, who a minute later had to stop the same player in a one-on-one when he beat the Stags’ offside trap.

Team: Coombes, Calum Biggins, Joe Bishop, Jordan Hughes (Saunders 63), Read; Delenay, Uppington, Ellis, Manning (Radnedge 84), Shearer (Conor Biggins 46); Hardidge.

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