Match Report: Halesowen Town 1-1 Nantwich Town


Jack Jones reports on the Dabbers 1-1 draw in the FA Cup with Halesowen Town.

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Nantwich Town will be in the hat for the FA Cup 4th Qualifying Round Draw after they fought from 1-0 down to force a replay with Halesowen Town on a wet afternoon at the Grove Stadium. The Dabbers dominated possession, but found themselves up against a typically solid Halesowen defence. After a tight and cagey first half of few chances, the game burst into life in the 2nd half.

A mistake at the back from Nantwich allowed Yeltz top scorer Kaiman Anderson in to break the deadlock just after the hour mark. However, the Dabbers recovered from that set back to force an equaliser, with a Sam Hall shot deflected in via the head of Josh Hancock 15 minutes from time. Despite a frantic final 10 minutes, neither team could force a winner and they will have to go again on Tuesday night to determine who progresses.

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The Dabbers went into the game unchanged from the side that started against Warrington Town on Tuesday. Halesowen named danger man Anderson and goalscorer from the teams previous encounter Malcolm Melvin in midfield.

The game struggled to get going in the first half as driving rain and a tricky pitch made conditions tough to play attractive football. The Dabbers started to see more of the ball as Halesowen were content to sit deep and contain them. Ryan Brooke was the first to have a sight of goal, as he side footed a cross from Ibou Touray wide of the post. Matt Bell then headed a Theo Stair cross over the bar.

There were very few clear sightings of goal though as both sides probed for an opener. Jay Denny went into the book for a late challenge on Theo Stair before an Andy White cross through the 6 yard box couldn’t find an Orange shirt. Halesowen made a tactical change, with Richard Sho-Silva subbed off for Ethan Delaney as the Yeltz went with 2 strikers upfront. They finally had their first effort of the game on 41 minutes when Delaney shot low on goal, but Dave Parton made a smart save down to his right.

Neither side could find the breakthrough in what had in truth been a dull first half, with very little goalmouth action on display. The Dabbers had dominated possession, but had few genuine chances to show for their control.

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The 2nd half once again took on a similar patter to the first half, with the Dabbers controlling possession. Delaney put a half chance well wide of Parton’s near post as the Yeltz upped their tempo. On 62 minutes, they had the breakthrough following a rare mistake in the Dabbers defence. The ball was picked up in midfield and a quick ball forward got to Anderson, who found space in the Nantwich back line. He steadied himself before rolling the ball into the bottom corner past Parton.

A few minutes later and Parky reacted by bringing on Josh Hancock for Wayne Riley on the left wing as the Dabbers searched for the equaliser. On 74 minutes, Sean Cooke had a free kick tipped over the bar by Platt as Nantwich turned up the pressure on the home side. 2 minutes later and they were level. The ball fell to Sam Hall on the edge of the box and he hit a shot towards goal. The ball was deflected towards goal by Josh Hancock and the change in direction caught out Platt, who could only watch as the ball looped over him and dropped into the net. It was great reactions from Hancock and it gave the Dabbers a deserved equaliser.

Touray went into the book for a late challenge and Dave Walker came on for Brooke with 10 minutes to go as the Dabbers looked for a winner. Walker went close a minute after coming on, as he put a low header just wide of the post after a good cross from Hancock. Cooke then saw a dipping effort go just over and Anderson shot straight at Parton at the other end.

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Osebi Abadaki came on for the final few minutes, replacing Cooke. Both teams pressed for a winner as the game became frantic in the closing stages. The closest either side came to a 2nd was 2 minutes into injury time when a Stair curling effort went just wide of the far post with Platt beaten. It was the final action of the game as both teams had to settle for a replay.

Halesowen Town: Daniel Platt, Kyle Haynes, Aaron Griffiths (Hancocks 46), Jay Denny(c), Kyle Morrison, Asa Charlton, Malcolm Melvin, Kaiman Anderson, Richard Sho-Silva (Ethan Delaney, 37), Joe Colley (Cleet 58)

Goalscorer: Kaiman Anderson(62)

Nantwich Town: Dave Parton, Andy White, Ben Harrison, Curtis Jones, Ibou Touray, Sam Hall(c), Matt Bell, Theo Stair, Sean Cooke(Osebi Abadaki, 85), Wayne Riley(Josh Hancock, 65), Ryan Brooke(Dave Walker, 80)

Subs not used: Reece Quinn, Josh Gordon, Danny Griggs

Goalscorer: Josh Hancock(76)

Yellow Card: Ibou Touray(78)

Attendance: 532

Highlights:

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