Blues hold out for valuable point

Grays Athletic 1 Mansfield Town 1

Blue Square Premier

Bill Robinson reports from The New Rec……

Grays managed to hold onto a point thanks to keeper Lee Butcher, he made numerous saves throughout the game but two fantastic saves in the last 15 minutes that kept Grays in the match.

The first half was quite uneventful with only half chances being created by both sides. It was from Mansfields second corner of the game that saw them take the lead, in the 12th minute, the corner was long and found the head of Luke Jones who sent the ball back to the near post for Jake Speight to sneak in by the post to head home.

Both teams defences managed to keep there opposition at arms length and the strikers had to rely on long range efforts, on two occasions Glenn Poole had an opportunity to score first time the keeper made a good save his second effort was sliced well wide.

The game was going from end to end but both defences remained in charge, Grays equaliser came in the 35th minute when the Mansfield defence appeared to fall asleep, a long ball out of defence by Gavin Hoyte found Obersteller on the left he pulled it back for Graham who crossed the ball and Jamie Slabber was unmarked around the penalty spot and he directed his header into the bottom right hand corner of the net with Keeper Marrott stranded on his line.

Half Time 1-1

Immense pressure from Mansfield straight from the restart saw two great chances for the visitor to regain the lead first Luke James header cleared of the line before keeper Butcher gathered it amongst a crowd of legs. Second chance saw the ball hit squarely against the bar from a corner after the ball was headed back by James for Perry to head against the bar.

Grays had to absorb even more pressure as Mansfield push forward with more urgency looking to get back in front. Mansfield in their quest again hit the bar and in the last few minutes of the game saw keeper Lee Butcher pull off two brilliant saves the best after Williams run down the left, he crossed and Spieght watch his goal bound header saved by Butchers outstretched right hand.

Grays Athletic: Lee Butcher, Daniel Charge, Sam Cutler, Kenny Davs, Richard Graham, Gavin Hoyte, Glen Poole, Jack Obersteller, Jamie Slabber, Anwar Uddin, Paolo Venazza.

Subs: Preston Edwards, George Beavan, Sam Gaughran, Tom Harvey, Charge, Charlie Taylor,

Mike Casey is on Holiday

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