Warminster Town 0 Ashton & Backwell 1
It had been heavy rain all morning but as the match progressed the rain stopped although it left a very cold wind blowing across the ground at Weymouth Street. The day started with the home side one point behind the visitors so a win for Warminster would have been good. The victory though went to Ashton & Backwell United with the only goal in the game which was scored in the 7th minute by Calum Townsend. There was some debate whether it was an excellent lob over the home keeper, Nathan Ball or an intended cross. I would credit it as a shot on goal from a fairly tight angle down Warminster's right side.
The visitors played a good passing game and for the first period of the first half were very much in control and always looked dangerous on the attack. Immediately from the restart, a mistake from Warminster saw Ashton's number 9 bearing down on goal but wasted the chance with the ball flying high over the bar. Two minutes later a shot again from Ashton's number 9, this time on target was well saved by keeper Nathan Ball diving to his left and pushing the ball out for a corner.
Warminster however, did start to grow into the game and began to create chances of their own with Jack Miluk going close on 12 minutes. Three minutes later a well-taken free kick on the right by Eben Mortimer-Taylor was met by the head of Lewis Graham but was wide to the left of the target. In minutes 29 and 31 Warminster's captain Charlie Walton had opportunities but were not converted to goals.
Just before the end of the half, an excellent opportunity fell to the visitors with from a corner from their left which resulted in a near-post header, fortunately, punched away by a forward diving Nathan Ball and then the whistle blew. So an entertaining half which left the visitors ahead at one - nil.
The second-half got underway and Warminster pressed from the off. In the second minute, another good free kick from Mortimer-Taylor was well aimed towards the right-hand post of Ashton's goal and met by Butler but the ball was cleared. It was very close to being a goal. On five minutes Walton's cross from near the left-side touchline was almost converted by the head of a diving Jack Miluk.
The home side went close again from a free kick taken by Harry Barnes after being fouled which went just over the crossbar. Two minutes later the visitors should have gone ahead when before a gaping goal Ashton's number 11 slid in and put the ball wide from close range. If that had gone in it would have been game over for The Red & Blacks.
Just over half-way in this half, manager Andy Crabtree made two substitutions bringing on Beau Blakeman and Jake Herd for Stewart Lisowski and Jake Herd thus increasing the attacking option to try to get level in this game and maybe go on and win what so far was a hard fought game.
On 75 minutes the substitute Blakeman made a powerful 30-yard strike which was deflected and the ball fell to Lewis Graham but was saved by the keeper falling onto the ball at Graham's feet. Another well-created opportunity by Warminster on the hunt for that elusive goal.
A good run down the left from Jake Wright forced a corner in the final minutes for Warminster. It was taken and the ball was headed back across goal by Graham and met by Butler who's looping shot was saved by the keeper.
The goal didn't come for Warminster Town but overall they did create chances and played much better than in the previous two games. It was certainly a game that was entertaining, two hard-working teams, a credit to non-league football and the value it brings to the local community. The next home match is on Saturday, October 13th when the visitors will be Chard Town and kickoff as usual at 3 pm.
Team: Ball, Sissons, Lisowski, McFerran, Graham, Herd, Mortimer-Taylor, Walton, Miluk, Butler, Barnes subs: Collyer, Taylor*, Blakeman*, Wright S, Wright J* (*subs used) Attendance 105
To watch the match replay on YouTube Click Here which was broadcast live.
Photos courtesy of David Feast