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01:05 28th October 2012
By  Andrew Poole



THE SADDLERS stepped out in Autumn sunshine on a chilly day in Lancashire.

Within a minute of kick-off, the home side went on the attack through Dominic Poleon and as the ball rebounded to the feet of Steve Schumacher, his effort was pushed out by the returning David Grof.

It was a bright start by Bury, who won for the first time since April on Tuesday evening.

Another raid by the home side saw them seize upon a poor pass out of defence only for Poleon to fire well over at the second attempt.

Walsall's first foray forward resulted in a goal when Efe Sodje's poor backpass saw Trevor Carson's attempted clearance strike Will Grigg and rebound towards goal as Grigg made sure the ball crossed the line despite pressure from the 'keeper.

The home side were back on level terms on 11 minutes when the lively Poleon twisted and turned on the left of the area before getting in a strike that found its way into the net.

It was an end-to-end start to the game and Nicky Featherstone was unlucky to see a long-range strike beaten away after Grigg had made his presence felt in the build-up.

With 27 minutes on the clock, Andy Taylor forced to leave the action as James Chambers, back from injury, took his place. His first action was to defend a free-kick in a dangerous position that Schumacher fired goalwards and Grof finger-tipped around the post.

There was a superb headed clearance off the line from Andy Butler on 37 minutes as Poleon was picked out in space by David Healy as he broke with purpose into the area. Poleon managed to lift the ball over Grof but couldn't beat the skipper who covered well.

Right on the stroke of half-time, a foul by James Chambers gave Bury another free-kick in a good position, but this time it was easy for Grof to gather.

In stoppage time, Tom Hopper did well to hold off Paul Downing just inside the area and get in a low strike that Grof pushed out for a corner that was cleared to safety.

Half-time: Bury 1 Walsall 1

An early strike from Jamie Paterson blocked by Trevor Carson in The Shakers' goal as The Saddlers looked to make their mark in the early stages of the second period.

There was a let-off for Walsall at the other end when Tom Hopper's low effort hit the base of the post and rebounded to safety.

A corner from Jamie Paterson flew agonisingly across the face of goal on the hour-mark with no-one on hand to get a crucial touch.

The 66th minute saw George Bowerman unleashed into the action in place of James Baxendale.

Dangerous ball into the far post by Peter Sweeney headed clear under pressure by Downing before Bury's next raid saw David Worrall go close from inside the area as The Saddlers found themselves under pressure with 15 minutes to go.

The home faithful were disputing a lot of the decisions by the referee as the clock ticked down. There was a third and final change as Ashley Hemmings came on for Jamie Paterson.

A foul by Andy Butler right on the edge of the area gave The Shakers a free-kick in the final minute which Schumacher hit low but it was easily gathered by Grof.

That was to be the last real action of the game as the scores ended level at 1-1.

FULL-TIME: Bury 1 Walsall 1

WALSALL: David Grof, Richard Taundry, Andy Butler, Nicky Featherstone, Adam Chambers, Flo Cuvelier, Will Grigg, Jamie Paterson (Ashley Hemmings), Paul Downing, James Baxendale (George Bowerman), Andy Taylor (James Chambers). Subs not used: Febian Brandy, Ben Purkiss, Jake Jones, Liam Roberts.


    For the first 50 years of their existence, England played their home matches all around the country.