Frickley Athletic vs Matlock Town FC
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Matlock Town FC2
Frickley Athletic 2-2 Matlock Town
Had this been a league fixture then maybe manager Steve Kittrick might not have been impressed with the outcome which saw Bet Victor South East Division hosts Frickley salvage a draw after the Gladiators had not converted a host of chances to seal the game.
Kittrick will still be bemoaning his side's lack of quality in front of goal as in the second half especially, a string of shots were straight at Frickley custodian Tom Harrison, meaning that in ninety minutes he was not fully extended.
A nice touch from Frickley was the offer which Matlock accepted to hold a minute's silence for longstanding Gladiators fan Phil Williams who died earlier in the week.
Matlock made one change to the starting line up beaten by Chesterfield in midweek as Nathan Whitehead replaced Luke Hinsley, back at his former club.
The bench included trialists, one of which was Curtis Morrison, the striker having had two loan spells previously at Matlock.
The first half saw Matlock fail to reproduce the fast paced attacking play evident against Chesterfield and it soon became apparent why Kittrick wanted to see how people coped with a more physical and direct approach.
Not too well would have been the verdict early on although Frickley on this occasion looked a mere shadow of their usual physical selves.
Sam Cable drove the opening presentable chance off target with a twenty yard strike which fizzled narrowly wide on the 9th minute.
Matlock at last provided their travelling faithful with a chance after a quarter of an hour. Some neat interchanges on the edge of the Frickley penalty box between Piteu Crouz and Louis Wardle led to Frickley clearing their lines.
But Matlock were allowing the hosts too much time and space on the flanks and they were punished twith a speedy f, his crooray on the numberhere 17th minute. Cable again caused the headaches as Matlock failed to cover the flanks and Hazel scored with a low shot that hit a bump to deceive Stewart.
Apart from Whitehead"s twenty five harder at Jackson, an untidy looking Matlock produced little else until the half hour when Marcus Marshall mFe space to shoot narrowly wide.
Matlock improved as the half wore on and a powerful Luke Dean strike sped inches over the bar before a weak Crouz strike was comfortable ollected by Harrison.
But Marshall levelled thanks to some fine individual skilful play five minutes before the interval skipping past several despairing challenges to round Jackson and slide into an empty net.
Stewart held Hazel's strike as the new half unfolded, one which would evolve to an attack versus defence encounter with Matlock asking nearly all of the questions.
Substitute Andrew Wright was twice close and Morrison had two efforts blocked. Wright saw another couple of shots charged down before Harrison gifted up the lead when his poor throw let Morrison to fire home.
The chances continued for Matlock with Luke Hinsley firing hide and wide when we'll placed.
The Gladiators would regret those spurned opportunities when a swift Frickley break saw Matlock opened up and Kyle Simpson forced his shot low past Stewart and just inside the post.
That proved to be the final action with six minutes left to deny Matlock their first pre season win.
Frickley 1 Tom Jackson 2 Brad Mears 3 Liam Carrick 4 Todd Jordan 5 Jack Harrison 6 Luke Hogg 7Sam Cable 8 Jack Burton 9 Jack McMenamy 10 Jake Currie 11 Jacob Hazel. Subs 12 Howard Brandon 14 Lewis Boarding 15 Nenad Smirjanic 16 Oliver Russo. 17 Kyle Simpson 18 Joel FIern
Matlock 1 Jon Stewart 2 Louis Wardle 3 Ben Gordon 4 Jordon Cooke 5 James Williamson 6 Dwayne Wiley 7 Luke Dean 8 Nathan Whitehead 9 Marcus Marshall 10 Spencer Harris 11 Piteu Crouz. Subs 12 Andrew Wright 14 James Tague 15 Adam Yates 16 Curtis Morrison 17 Ben Edgson18 Ben Morris 19 Kenny Tarangadza 20 Niall Doran 21 Denzil Wellington. referee. Ian Johnston (Wakefield Att 120 EST Best Gladiator. Jordan Cooke