Bostik League round-up: Needham Market start with a draw at Burgess Hill Town
- Credit: Archant
Needham Market started their campaign in the Bostik Premier with a 1-1 draw at Burgess Hill Town.
Callum Harrison gave the Marketmen the lead after 58 minutes, but Nezval struck after 76 minutes to level the scores. He then went close to giving the home side the win after 88 minutes, but headed just over.
Elsewhere, Brightlingsea Regent began their first ever season in the Bostik Premier, the seventh tier of English football and step three in non-league, with a 1-1 draw at Tooting on Saturday.
This was an opening day meeting of the Division One South and North champions from last year, and the R’s were good value for their point.
The visitors took the lead in the 26th minute, Tom Richardson heading home after the hosts had failed to deal with a free-kick.
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Aaron Condon rattled a post with a 20-yard volley in the 42nd minute, as James Webster’s side searched for a killer second.
Tooting equalised just three minutes into the second half. Billy Dunn side-footed home from close range, following Jake Baxter’s cross.
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The R’s did have their chances to force a winner and Phil Kelly, making his 250th appearance for the club, was denied by a post after Witherspoon’s initial shot had been saved in the 70th minute.
Lowestoft Town lost 2-1 at Leatherhead in their Bostik Premier opener. Travis Cole got a late goal for the Trawlerboys, but it wasn’t enough.
Meanwhile, Maldon & Tiptree, beaten in the Bostik North play-offs last season, enjoyed a winning start to their new season with a 1-0 win at Ware.
Chris Millar grabbed what proved to be the winner in the 41st minute, with his first goal for the Jammers. Millar drilled home from 12 yards out following a good run and delivery from Bailey.
Also in Bostik North, Bury Town had to settle for a point in their season opener at home to Romford after failing to take advantage of multiple chances.
Mildenhall Town, in their first ever game at Bostik North level, fell to a 2-1 defeat at Heybridge Swifts, Chris Bacon getting their goal from the penalty spot.
Jake Kerins was sent off late for Hall, who now host Dereham Town on Tuesday.