Walsham and FC Clacton share the points

Ryan Clarke played a key role for Walsham in their 2-2 draw with FC Clacton. Picture: ANDY ABBOTT

Ryan Clarke played a key role for Walsham in their 2-2 draw with FC Clacton. Picture: ANDY ABBOTT - Credit: Archant

Thurlow Premier Walsham-le-Willows 2 FC Clacton 2 Walsham’s first home league game of the season ended all square as they took on a well-drilled Clacton outfit who deserved to take a point back to North Essex, writes Dave Meeson.

The hosts’ new manager Trevor Newman has presided over a fine start to the season, the highlight of which was a 3-2 victory over much-fancied Stowmarket, and they now sit a very creditable sixth in the league at the end of this weekend’s fixtures.

After a quiet opening Walsham had a great opportunity to open the scoring when George Bugg and Sam Peters carved out a chance for Lee Warren, who could only divert his effort into the grateful arms of Clacton keeper Joe Fowler from point-blank range.

The visitors went straight down the other end and Jake Plane forced home stopper Steve Fenner to turn his powerful 25 yarder over the bar. Walsham’s Ryan Clarke then sent in an effort from a similar distance which just went wide of the upright.

The deadlock was broken by Willows on 34 minutes when joint top league marksman Bugg picked himself up to convert from the spot with his seventh goal of the season after being brought down by Oliver Lamb.

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Walsham’s lead lasted a mere three minutes as the impressive Harry McDonald played in Adam Hampson and, when his effort was blocked by Fenner, the ball fell to Matt Eve who converted into an empty net.

The home side continued to play some neat passing football after the break though they struggled to create any more openings and were hampered further by Bugg’s withdrawl through injury.

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Eve then went close to adding his second of the afternoon before Clacton went ahead on 71 minutes when Hampson finished well after a lung-busting 60 yard run by McDonald from the edge of his own penalty area.

However, Walsham salvaged a point shortly afterwards as Clarke’s corner was powerfully headed home by Matt Collins. Clacton had a chance to win late on as Lamb beat Fenner to the ball, but his effort went the wrong side of the post.

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