IT WAS a prompt return to home soil for The Saddlers as we renewed acquaintances with Yeovil Town.
There was a lively start from both teams as the visitors almost capitalised upon a weak back-pass before Tom Bradshaw forced a corner at the other end which saw Paul Downing go close.
The experienced James Hayter fired over for The Gloves on nine minutes whilst a Walsall raid on the left ended with a teasing ball into the area side-footed wide by Ashley Grimes.
After former Yeovil loanee, Billy Clifford and the Bradshaw both dipped efforts over from distance, a neat turn inside the area from Grimes saw his strike pushed away by the 'keeper. The resulting corner saw Bradshaw go close as The Saddlers upped the tempo.
With half-time approaching, Kevin Dawson tried his luck from distance but O'Donnell was right behind it to gather.
Some positive play from Liam Kinsella ended with him finding Grimes who was fouled right on the edge of the area as Andy Taylor stepped up to put the free-kick inches wide.
Moments later, Romaine Sawyers found himself through but he placed his effort wide of the target as The Saddlers ended the half strongly.
Right on the stroke of half-time, Bradshaw saw an attempt inside the area block as the half ended goalless.
The first sight of goal for Walsall in the second half saw Sawyers fire wide.
The visitors took the lead when James Hayter planted a header home beyond the reach of O'Donnell in the 57th minute.
It was a blow for The Saddlers as Anthony Forde came on to replace Benning just past the hour-mark.
A sweeping move by Walsall ended with Sawyers' cross cleared for a corner, which saw Clifford's strike, after the ball was half-cleared, deflected for another flag-kick. This time Bradshaw was able to scramble the ball home from close range for the equaliser.
Just moments later The Glovers were back in front when the ball came in from the left and Kevin Dawson was on hand to find the net.
The Saddlers made another change on 78 minutes as Kieron Morris replaced Clifford. The final change came on 83 minutes as Amadou Bakayoko took the place of Sawyers.
A free-kick was whipped in and found the head of Bakayoko who was just off target as Walsall searched for a leveller.
Some neat play from Forde saw him cross invitingly into the area where Bakayoko appeared to be pushed as he went for the header.The referee was well placed and said no penalty.
There was a foul on Bradshaw as he headed towards goal and the resulting free-kick was just off target from Taylor who couldn't get enough dip on the ball.
It was to be the last real action as The Saddlers went down by two goals to one.