REPORT: Gresley seal gutsy point at Boldmere

Updated: Jan 5, 2020

Gresley could not hold onto their first-half lead, eventually sealing a gutsy 1-1 draw with Boldmere St Michaels.

The Moatmen looked like they were going to seal their first victory in three games when Albert Lansdowne opened the scoring via a header at the back post, however a second half strike from Stephen Palmer eventually sealed a point for the home side.

Gresley could have easily been behind in the opening minute however, a missed clearance from Lansdowne allowed Kyle Batchelor free range at the Moatmen’s goal, but the former Gresley midfielder could only strike the post. Boldmere would not have many other chances to get past what was a solid back three.

Despite the early scare, it would be the away side who find the back of the net first. After just 19 minutes a pinpoint delivery from the corner kick by Joe Haines found a rising Lansdowne who, with help from the post, guided his header past Matthew Coton.

The goal invigorated Gresley, and the belief told as they nearly doubled their lead when Jack Walsh’s half volley flew inches over the bar from outside the box. Yet, they were presented with an even bigger chance minutes later. Louie Briscoe hooked a clearance over Boldmere’s backline to find Michael Nelson who, after leaving the defender’s for dead, just couldn’t squeeze is effort past Coton, who saved well.

As the half drew to a close, Gresley didn’t rest in their search for a second goal. The hard-working Kyle Parchment cheekily attempted to catch out Coton at his near post twice, but Boldmere’s ‘keeper was up to the test, denying the frontman both times.

In the second half, the Moatmen picked up where they left off, Parchment once again caused problems for the home side’s defence. A big clearance found the striker however, after turning his man, he could only fire wide.

The away side’s best chance to stretch their advantage came in the 58th minute. Fantastic work from Briscoe saw the forward snatch possession away from Boldmere high up the pitch before dancing through their defence. With the ball in his possession on the byline, Briscoe squared it across goal to the awaiting Michael Nelson, however, the winger side footed agonisingly wide - letting Boldmere off the hook for some hesitant defending.

It would prove that Gresley would rue this chance, Boldmere punishing them ruthlessly. Just 11 minutes later a wide free kick was floated into the box, and after multiple deflections and blocks the ball fell to Stephen Palmer at the back post who calmly slotted past Ben Gough at his near post.

With the away side now level and Gresley tiring, Boldmere started to take control of the match. In the 73rd minute another free kick nearly gave them the lead, striking the bar with a superb effort.

Despite a dominant hour from the away side, they now found themselves holding on for a point as Boldmere piled forward in search of, what would’ve been, a flattering winner. Disaster nearly struck for Gresley in injury time as Ben Gough was caught off his line, however Joshua Cooke’s effort from the edge dribbled just inches wide.

Gresley are back in action in midweek, welcoming Sporting Khalsa to the Moat Ground as they look to snap a run of three games without a win.

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