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Teenager Beecham catches the eye on Shortwood debut


Milton United 1 Shortwood 1

UHL Hellenic League Division One West

This was a terrific performance from Shortwood who stuck to the game plans throughout, much to the delight of manager Ian Soule who was full of praise for his side, writes Jim Cunneen.

Wood can consider themselves a tad unlucky not to have gained all three points from this game which was played in an excellent spirit. 

Once again Wood included Max Brent and Rupert Beecham as they were without the injured Joe Wilton and Kyle Gibbs and the unavailable Louis Peyton. Beecham was Wood’s star man. In truth, all played their part in a display that possibly deserved more.

With the wind again blowing end-to-end, Wood had to play two definite game plans and both were executed perfectly. Wood played a containing game in the first half and were far more open in the second period. 

Sims did well to save a deflected Kennedy shot after 12 minutes and Lewis shot wide after a strong run. Payne came close with one shot and keeper Alder saved well from a Lewis free-kick. Just before the break, Sims turned away a shot from Nadin to send the sides in level.

The second half was more open and Wood were much more attacking and this paid off after 52 minutes. A Wood attack was well defended but the ball broke to Alex Barrett who slammed the ball into the bottom corner from 25 yards. The lead lasted barely 3 minutes when Milton broke and a long ball found Gallagher who appeared to be offside. His ball across the area was put home by Nadine.

Undaunted, Wood continued to push forward and on the hour Brent ran through and his excellent chip over Alder came back off the bar. Byrnes shot narrowly wide before Wood lost Barrett who left the field feeling unwell.  With 71 minutes gone Payne fired through a ruck of players before being cleared with the Wood players adamant the ball had gone well over the line.  Alder then made a great save to deny Dunn who shot from the edge of the area. 

It was far from one-way traffic, however, and Milton too created chances and Sims had to be alert to deny Highmoor. 

This was a good point for the Wood, however, and with a little luck they could have recorded a fine win. 

Shortwood: Sims, Harper – Emerson, Barrett (Dunn 69), Nowell (Montague 78), Tryner, Byrnes, Payne, Beecham, Lewis, Tunnicliff, Brent

Star Man: Rupert Beecham.

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