Seasiders have to settle for a point on opening day



Felixstowe & Walton United began their Pitching In Isthmian League North campaign with a goalless draw away at Great Wakering Rovers in South Essex this afternoon. The Seasiders can consider themselves unlucky not to snatch all three points after an encouraging performance against a side that ran out 4-1 winners the last time the clubs met, on the opening day last season.

Felixstowe made three changes to the starting eleven that suffered the heart breaking mammoth penalty shootout loss in the Emirates FA Cup at Hashtag United last Sunday, Miles Powell, Sam Nunn and Kyle Jopling lining up in place of Stuart Ainsley (Suspended), Lamell Howell and Dan Davis.


It was the visitors who had the better start to the game, and could have been ahead inside the first minute, Miles Powell seeing his looping header cleared off the goal-line. Keeper Callum Robinson safely smothered a 12th minute shot down at his near post, as both sides tried to gain the ascendancy. Felixstowe’s other best two first-half opportunities came with 60 seconds of each other, Good work by teenager Tyger Smalls, down the left flank, teed up Miles Powell in a central position in front of goal, but he scuffed his shot straight at James Scammell, Shortly afterwards, Jamal Wiggins scooped over the bar from close range after great work from Ollie Canfer. Great Wakering someone managed to hit the crossbar from 3 yards out as the half ended goalless. 

A defensive lapse almost cost the visitors dear in the 55th minute, but Robinson came to the rescue with a smart low save from Tuohy’s goalbound snap shot. At the other end, Powell failed to get enough power into a long-range shot, with Scammell easily saving in the 69th minute, while Ollie Canfer was only a whisker away from diverting home a free-kick by substitute Henry Barley from point blank range. Rovers spurned their best chance of the afternoon, on 80 minutes. Jake Gordon burst beyond the Seasiders defence, but ballooned his shot over the bar with just the keeper to beat. Felixstowe stepped up a gear late on and peppered the target, Canfer heading straight at Scammell from close-in after substitute Nick Ingram had nodded on a corner. Centre-half Sam Nunn could also only direct a header straight at the keeper in the 88th minute.


Felixstowe Manager Stuart Boardley spoke after the game. "I'm happy with a point but I think we deserved all three, however it's a good, solid start to the season and a clean sheet. It was a good performance and given the disruptive pre-season we've had, I'm actually really pleased. I thought we were in control and I never felt uncomfortable in the game, perhaps other than a period towards the last five minutes of the game when the game got really stretched with both teams trying to win it, but unfortunately I think both teams could have played here all day today and still not scored!"

The Seasiders are next back in action on Saturday 26th September when the first qualifying round of the FA Trophy sees the two sides go to battle once again, this time at the Goldstar Ground.

















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