Brakes regained top spot in ICIS Midland Combination
Premier Division with a deserved draw at Highgate on Saturday.
They could have claimed all three points if they had converted possession
into scoring chances.
Right from the start, Brakes looked a more purposeful side than in recent
weeks and could have scored as early as the eighth minute. Following a
fine solo run, Darren Timms' shot was parried but Steve Thompson missed
the follow-up. Chris Hanrahan then headed Brian Agar's cross over the bar.
Despite all their possession, Brakes did not capitalise. They could have
paid the penalty on 27 minutes when a free kick on the edge of the area
was tipped over the bar by the assured Myles Day.
Then two minutes before the break, a good four-man move involving Agar,
Hanrahan, Thompson and Josh Blake came to nothing. It summed up a
frustrating first period for the usual large band of Leamington
Highgate came out to take the game to the visitors in the second half and
Day was called upon to make a good save within a minute of the restart.
Having weathered the opening storm, Brakes had a good spell. Perhaps the
best chance fell to Blake on 61 minutes when he broke clear and tried to
lob the ball over the keeper.
Two minutes later, a long throw by the ever-busy Webb was headed on by
Agar to Timms whose low shot went just wide of the post. The spring-heeled
Agar had a chance himself to score on 77 minutes but hit the side netting.
Impressive midfielder Hanrahan was booked for a 90th-minute foul. He could
have few complaints, but must have wondered why the referee was so
tolerant of some hard Highgate tackling.
At the back, Si Walker, Tom Sidwell and Andy Gregory again all had solid
matches and, when they were beaten, Day showed why is one of the best
shot-stoppers in the league.
Joint-manager Barry Proctor also bemoaned the lack of goal-scoring
chances. He said: "We didn't pressurise their defence enough and test
their keeper. However, it shows how far we have come when we are
disappointed with a draw against a top side such as Highgate".
Leading striker Paul Nicholls had an exploratory operation on his left
knee yesterday (Thursday) and Baz Shearsby has appealed against the
severity of his six-week ban and is free to play for the foreseeable
future. Simon Wickson and Harj Dhesi made appearances from the bench.