Blyth FA Cup - Nantwich Town's Weaver Stadium, pre-season games, community football

Nantwich Town earned a 1-1 draw with Conference Premier side AFC Telford United at the Weaver Stadium in their latest pre-season friendly, writes Richard Scott.

The Dabbers took the lead just after the hour mark through Steve Jones.

But Mike Phenix equalized for the visitors with 15 minutes to go in an entertaining game.

Nantwich played some pleasing stuff as they work towards Buxton away in their opening game 2014-15 league game of the season on August 16.

The Dabbers could have gone ahead on eight minutes when Andy White broke through on the left hand side and found space down the wing before cutting in but his shot just went wide.

At the other end, Steve Phillips had to be on hand to make an early contender for save of the season when he turned Andy Owens’ half volley wide of the goal.

Just a few minutes later Max Harrop had a shot from the edge of the area after an Adam Pepper corner, but the striker’s shot went just wide through a crowd of bodies.

The Dabbers deserved a goal on 18 minutes when Vinnie Mukendi skipped through the Telford defence, but his cross was cleared for a throw in.

On 26 minutes, Harrop was brought down and took a short corner which caught out the Bucks.

Blake was allowed to cross and find former Telford man Mat Bailey, but he couldn’t direct his effort goalwards.

Phillips was forced to make a fine diving header to keep out his own skipper Mark Jones’ defensive header which was heading straight into his own net.

The first real chance of the second half saw Wilson play Harrop through one on one with Hedge, but the linesmen flagged.

On the hour mark, the Bucks brought on former Dabber Sean Cooke.

But he was helpless as Steve Jones broke through the Telford defence and neatly opened the scoring for the Dabbers.

Moments later Cooke had a free kick which drifted just wide of Phillips’ post.

Phillips rivalled his save from the first half when he had to get down low to tip a Jordan Deacey shot past the post.

On 68 minutes, Telford’s Charlie Barnett was booked following a rash challenge on Harrop.

The Dabbers could have doubled their lead on 68 minutes when Vinnie Mukendi stretched his legs with a long run but his cross was just too far in front of Harrop.

With 15 minutes to go the visitors were level when sub Tony Gray crossed and Phenix was free to beat Phillips from close range.

The goal failed to dampen the Dabbers’ spirit as Jones raced away down the wing but his cross evaded Pepper, and moments later Mukendi made a similar run but he found Jones in an offside position.

With eight minutes to go Jones went through again but his cross was stopped before it reached Jordan Johnson.

The Dabbers now go to Norton United this Saturday August 3, 3pm kick off.

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