Nailsea & Tickenham Reserves 1-1 Minehead

ON the opening day of Minehead’s new Somerset County League football season it was a score draw against Nailsea & Tickenham Reserves, writes Brian Walder.

It was a good move featuring Rob Vickers and Sam Heath which provided the opportunity for Guy Burns to open his 2023/24 account after just five minutes, firing home competently with his well proven left foot.

Shortly after Minehead wing back Ellis Shaw had received a harsh yellow card, the hosts were back on terms when a free kick from deep was not defended well enough and Nick Walker was on hand to level the scores.

Burns nearly doubled his sides’ tally on the half hour when slick team work in midfield cut through the home ranks and he was found in a good position inside the box. Outwitting two defenders in one movement he unleashed a snap shot which the home keeper did well to parry.

Ryan Wilkins’ attempt from thirty yards then smacked against the home crossbar with Gregory in the home goal well beaten, but again the rebound couldn’t be forced home. Minehead ended the half looking marginally the more likely to take the lead in what had become a keenly and evenly contested encounter.

The second half became fragmented at times, with frequent yellow cards being brandished to both sides by the official, including Burns and Graddon for Minehead.

In the final ten minutes both sides clearly went all out for three points, but Minehead were forced onto the back foot for the closing stages after Shaw had received a second questionable yellow leaving Minehead a player short.

Keeper Kyran Wilkins was kept increasingly busy as the home pressure built and made two outrageous saves in the dying seconds to keep the scores level.

All said and done it was a well earned and justified point from an under-strength Minehead XI who showed plenty of signs of cohesion with their cutting link up play against a useful home side who will be looking to improve on last season’s sixth position.

Minehead: Kyran Wilkins, Martyn Phillips, Ellis Shaw, Ryan Wilkins, Mike Graddon, Maty Ronan, Sam Heath, Hubi Wejnerowski, Guy Burns, Rob Vickers, Alfie Lyons.
Subs: Olly Prescott, Dan Vickers (Both Used)