MALVERN Town started life in the Hellenic League Premier Division with a point from a 1-1 draw at Westfields.

It was a competitive start to proceedings with both sides working hard. MacDonald fired well over for the hosts before our first opening saw Dave Reynolds find Harry Clark with a great ball and he in turn set up Joe Bullock who forced a good save out of the ‘keeper.

There was a chance for the home side when Hunt was allowed to break into the area before finding Iddles whose strike was blocked by Jay Sauntson.

On the quarter-hour mark, Havard had to be alert to head clear outside his area as Matt Turner applied the pressure and as the loose ball fell to Clark, his strike from distance had to be cleared off the line.

Moments later Clark got his goal as he cut inside before tucking home with his usual aplomb to open the scoring.

There was a good save from Keiron Blackburn to deny Greaves with a swooping header from a free-kick out wide.

The tackles were certainly flying in from both sides as the opening period went on. A free-kick delivered to the far post by Louis Loader was put over by Adam Sauntson.

An inviting ball in from Clark just evaded everyone in the middle before some desperate defending at the other end saw Jay Sauntson clear and then as Loader played through Turner on the counter-attack, he was hauled down by the ‘keeper who was red-carded.

The resulting free-kick from Loader was fired over the crossbar as we went in at the break a goal to the good.

The home side came out of the blocks with real purpose at the start of the second half and after Blackburn had made a good early claim, they levelled matters on 48 minutes as we failed to clear our lines and Davies found the net.

On 51 minutes, Reynolds went through and as he beat the ‘keeper, his effort from a tight angle hit the base of the post.

A sliced clearance from the home side caused them all sorts of problems as they managed to scramble clear under pressure.

As we started to get into our stride once more, Turner hit a shot on the turn that flashed just wide of the target.

Some determined play from Turner saw his pull-back find Platt whose strike lacked the necessary power to trouble the ‘keeper.

The home side went close as Iddles’ strike was deflected over and from the resulting corner, Blackburn did well to gather.

The blood-and-thunder nature continued into the closing stages as both sides pushed for a winner but it was not to be as honours ended even.

HILLSIDERS: Blackburn, Smith, Platt, A. Sauntson, J. Sauntson, L. Loader, Bullock, Reynolds, Clark, Bates, Turner (J. Febery 80). Subs not used: Timmins, Chowns Higgs, Parker, J. Loader.

Booking(s): Smith, Platt

Goal(s): Clark

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