First Draw of the Season
For the final game of 2018, Warminster Town made the relatively short trip to Welton Rovers, Midsomer Norton. The home side started the day in 7th place on 32 points with the visitors in 12th on 27 points. It was a chilly and cloudy afternoon, and it was good to see a good number of away supporters to cheer on Warminster.
Following an excellent 4 - 2 at home over Wells City on Boxing Day, Warminster were looking to gain victory over the hosts and move further up the league table. Due to illness and injury, manager Andy Crabtree had to make some changes to that winning team. Sadly, victory was not to be, and Warminster earned their very first draw of the season. The final score was goalless, but it was definitely not a boring game. Here are some of the highlights of the match.
An early chance went to the home side in the 16th minutes when a free kick was given just outside the left-hand side of the penalty area and required a diving save from Nathan Ball close to the bottom of his right-hand post and pushing the ball away out towards the touchline.
A minute later a good run by Jack Miluk down the left-hand side from the halfway line saw him brought down just on the edge of the penalty area with a very cynical block from the defender which surprisingly did not receive further punishment. A well-taken free kick by Eben Mortimer-Taylor was just out of reach of Martin Johnson's head and cleared by Rovers. A few minutes later a header from Johnson from a cross from Jack Miluk went just wide of the left-hand post.
Welton Rovers' number 7, Richard Hurd received a yellow card after bringing down a player and although for the rest of the game was prone to pushing players didn't receive any further reprimands! In the 26th minute, a free kick once again taken by Mortimer-Taylor was met by Lewis Graham who headed wide. Both sides continued to press forward and had a few other shots go wide.
Watch the whole of the first half on YouTube
Early in the second half Jack Miluk went close (47) with his shot going agonisingly just wide of the left-hand post. The visitors once again went close in the 55th minute with a shot from the edge of the 'D' from Mortimer-Taylor just going wide of the right-hand post. Two minutes later a third successive corner was taken on the right by Mortimer-Taylor and met by the rising figure of Lewis Graham who headed across goal and unfortunately hit the right-hand post, a move well worthy of a goal.
Welton Rovers also had their opportunities and putting the ball just wide of goal seemed to be the order of the day for both sides. Town continued to try to get the all-important elusive goal, and in the 83rd minute a nice little back-heel flick from Johnson almost caught the goalkeeper out as it passed through the legs of a defender, but he managed to dive to his right on the ball and prevent the goal.
In the final minutes of the game both Miluk and Mortimer-Taylor went close but alas when the final whistle blew it remained Welton Rovers 0 Warminster Town 0. Although goalless there was drama and chances making it an entertaining game for the supporters to watch.
After the game, Andy Crabtree had this to say, "The boys did very well considering the problems we had with injuries and illness ... We’ve come out of Christmas with 7 points out of 9 all against teams higher in the league than us. We had chances to win today, but it shows how far we’ve come. Hopefully, we can produce much of the same at Chard on Saturday."
Warminster's next match is on Saturday, January 5th and once again they are on the road travelling to play Chard Town.
Team: Ball, Baggs, Barnes, Walton(c), Graham, Herd, Sissons, Mortimer-Taylor, Johnson, Miluk, Butler
subs: Holland, McEntee (used), Chenery-Bowden
Watch the whole of the second half on YouTube
Photos courtesy of Scott Drysdale