Walker penalty enough for point for Jam Boys

Basingstoke Gazette: Nic Turpin on the ball for Whitchurch at Newport IOW on Saturday Nic Turpin on the ball for Whitchurch at Newport IOW on Saturday

Newport IOW 1 Whitchurch United 1.

Whitchurch journeyed to Newport for the third meeting between the clubs this season and showed just one change from the side that drew at Follands in midweek with Luke Walker coming in for the injured Isaac Sedu.

Both sides had early chances with Shane Lock just failing to make sufficient contact as goalkeeper Cameron Farley dallied over a back pass and Matt Evans firing wide at the other end.

Lock’s next run was stopped by a challenge by Oli Fleming which earned the defender a lengthy lecture from the referee then the ever dangerous Charlie Smeeton was halted in the area by a well timed challenge from Adam Pearson.

Persistence and strong running from Lock and Nic Turpin won the visitors two corners in quick succession and from the second Scott Hassell’s close range attempt was cleared off the line.

Walker was inches wide and Farley clung on superbly to a cross from the same player before leaving his area to again deny Lock.

Farley blocked a fierce effort from Matt Scott and in the ensuing scramble there were strong appeals that the ball had crossed the line that were rejected by the referee. However if Whitchurch felt hard done by with that decision they were to be grateful for his next one of note as the half entered its final five minutes.

Again Lock chased a long pass, the keeper dived at his feet and clearly fell on the ball before Lock went over him and the referee awarded a penalty.

Walker was unfazed by the delay as arguments were quelled and gave Farley no chance with the kick.

Whitchurch were forced into a change at the break with Tom Lockyer coming on for the injured Tom Pemberton and found themselves under pressure. Alex Thompson pushed a fierce drive from Tom Scovell on to the post and to safety before Whitchurch broke with Turpin testing Farley from range.

Seabrook saw one free-kick turned behind by Thompson but his next, from the edge of the D, was missed by defender and attacker alike and finished in the far corner of the net.

With only minutes left the visitors were forced on the defensive as the home side sought a winner but, well marshalled by Pearson and Scott,they saw out time with only one scare – a headed back pass from Curtis Angell that beat Thompson but fortunately went the wrong side of the post.

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