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Kick off 19:45 (UK)

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01 August 2017 Venue Dales Lane Attendance Referee Mr P. Hobday

Kick off 19:45 (UK)

Rushall Olympic
2 - 2
Walsall FC
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Match Reports

Rushall Olympic 2-2 Walsall

1 August 2017

Jordon Sangha and Cameron Peters each found the scoresheet for a youthful Saddlers team in an entertaining friendly draw with non-league Rushall Olympic.

Sangha drilled Walsall ahead on 20 minutes before Joe Hull smashed home an equaliser eight minutes before half-time.

Peters restored the visitors’ lead on 59 minutes, but a trialist’s last-minute header ensured the match finished level.

Summer signing Nicky Devlin, who is suspended for Saturday's League One opener at Bury, played 87 minutes before being forced off with an injury.

It wasn’t until the 17th minute that either side had a meaningful shot on goal, Walsall’s Tobias Hayles-Docherty fizzing a well-struck low drive just wide.

And it was the Saddlers who made the breakthrough three minutes later, as Sangha drilled an unerring right-footed shot into the bottom corner from 20 yards after a slick passing move.

Rushall responded with Danny Waldron twice going close, first seeing a diving header pushed away by Ethan Dawe before having a deflected shot from a corner held by the visiting stopper.

In a bright spell from the hosts, Charlie Duke then blasted a powerful 20-yard free-kick high and wide.

After weathering the storm, Walsall really should have made it 2-0 on the half-hour.

Hayles-Docherty squared from the right to Cameron Peters, who looked certain to score from point-blank range, but Will Hancox slid in to make a last-ditch goal-saving block.

And that miss proved costly as the Pics equalised seven minutes before the break, Hull smashing the ball into the roof of the net after a scramble from Liam Lawrence’s free-kick.

Peters went close to restoring the Saddlers’ lead moments later with a low strike from a tricky angle which flashed just wide.

The forward had the ball in the net 12 minutes into the second half when he nodded home Sangha’s delightful far-post cross – but the goal was disallowed for offside.

Persistence finally paid off for Peters as he put Walsall back in front two minutes later, although there was more than a hint of good fortune about the goal.

Mitch Candlin’s 20-yard drive took a wicked deflection off a defender and completely wrong-footed goalkeeper Dan Crane.

The ball bobbled agonisingly towards the goalline, with Peters nipping in just ahead of a recovering defender to prod home from a matter of yards.

Again, Rushall’s reaction to falling behind was positive; Jayden McCalla had a low strike spilled by Dawe, who then parried a trailist’s 25-yard effort.

Olympic went mightily close to a leveller with 12 minutes left when substitute Dominic Dell crashed a blistering drive against the underside of the bar from a trialist’s cut-back.

But the hosts weren’t to be denied in the first minute of added time, a trialist heading home Lawrence’s corner at the near post to give Rushall a share of the spoils.


Team: Dawe, Devlin (Little 87’), Tonks (Leak 10’), Butterfield, Kendrick, Brown, Hayles-Docherty, Candlin, Peters, Sangha, Shorrock.

Subs not used: Nolan, Rogerson, Flanagan, Bates Willis.

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