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WALSALL v SHREWSBURY RES - LIVE BLOG

22 April 2013

All the action direct from Banks's Stadium...

THE SADDLERS stepped out for our first of two home reserve games within a week as we took on Shrewsbury Town.

It was a slow start by both teams with the only early opportunity of note falling to The Shrews' Scott Ryan in the ninth minute but he fired wide.

Some good work on the left by Ashley Hemmings in the 25th minute saw him feed Nicky Featherstone who lifted the ball just over.

The Shrews took the lead in the 27th minute when James Belshaw's clearance was charged down by Sam Molyneux who then slotted the ball home to make it 1-0.

Jake Jones did well to cut inside from the right and get in a low drive that Callum Burton got down to save well. Moments later, George Bowerman broke through The Shrews' rear-guard only to be denied by the legs of the 'keeper.

HALF-TIME: Walsall Reserves 0 Shrewsbury Town Reserves 1

There was a half-time change as Omari Sterling-James replaced Ashley Hemmings and he was soon in the action as he delivered an inviting cross from the right that the visitors managed to clear at the far post.

At the other end, Alex Dallison's headed clearance fell to David Azin who tried his luck but was denied by a smart save from James Belshaw who got down well to push his effort around the post.

Some neat football on 56 minutes saw Jones do well as he broke into the area to force a corner which was played short to Richard Taundry who rattled the base of the post from distance with a curling effort.

Another sharp move from The Saddlers ended with Featherstone linking up with Romaine Sawyers whose strike was deflected wide and as the resulting corner came back to him, Sterling-James put the ball back into the danger zone where the ball went in off a visiting defender to make it 1-1.

Nine minutes later, in the 69th minute, it was 2-1 to Walsall when Sawyers' through-ball opened up The Shrews' defence for Featherstone to break through, round the 'keeper and tuck home.

Sterling-James certainly livened proceedings up and he won a free-kick in a promising position that Taundry fired into the defensive wall twice.

There was a double change with just over ten minutes to go as youth teamers Liam Kinsella and Wes Rush replaced Jake Jones and Josh Hawker respectively.

Belshaw did well to deny Molyneux with a smart save in the 80th minute.

A foul on Scott Ryan right on the edge of the area gave The Shrews a free-kick which was fired in from Azin only for Belshaw to save well.

A lapse in concentration in defence on 88 minutes saw Ryan Woods presented with a great chance to level but he could only hit the post as he held his head in his hands. Then straight away at the other end, Sawyers found Sterling-James who in turn picked out Bowerman in space to his left but his strike was blocked by the 'keeper.

That was to be the last action of the game as the scoreline ended in victory for The Saddlers.

FULL-TIME: Walsall Reserves 2 Shrewsbury Town Reserves 1


WALSALL: Belshaw, Taundry, Benning, George, Dallison, Hemmings (Sterling-James), Featherstone, Hawker (Rush), J. Jones (Kinsella), Sawyers, Bowerman. Subs not used: Bakayoko, Roberts. 

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