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Tuesday 08th September 2020

PORTLAND United earned their first point of the Sydenhams Wessex Premier Division season with a 1-1 draw at Brockenhurst – but could have taken all three.

Adam Grange, who signed on dual registration terms from Poole along with Sam Jackson, put Portland ahead after the break with a stunning strike into the top corner.

A golden chance for 2-0 was spurned when Dom Panesar-Dower’s penalty was saved comfortably by James Mayo in the Badgers’ goal.

Five minutes later, William Tickle’s stonking finish levelled the game in an exciting second half.

Panesar-Dower and Ben Morris wasted clean through chances as Portland pushed for a winner.

And Portland’s Ryan McKechnie missed another late one-on-one chance, the ball rebounding off Grange and away off the post as the Badgers clung on to a point.

Blues’ boss Callum Brooks picked up his first points in the job as Portland continue to improve after a patchy pre-season, goalkeeper Josh Lucas again impressing.

Brooks said: “I thought it was a game we should’ve won. We were in control for large periods and scored a wonderful goal to go 1-0 up.

“Then we get a penalty and if it goes in, 2-0 with 20 minutes to go, you’d expect to win.

“Performance-wise I couldn’t have asked for more, (the players) gave us a real shift and played with some real quality, so it was a positive night.

“My group was fantastic, they played like you have visions of a team playing. They couldn’t have done more other than be more clinical.”

On the penalty miss, Brooks said: “Dom stepped up to take the penalty and it’s no problem, he hasn’t tried to miss.

“Without doubt, if we scored the penalty, we’d have won. Mistakes will happen, but we’re making progress.”

Reflecting on the display of Lucas, Brooks said: “Once again Josh was outstanding. He’s done it for three games now – big moments, big saves.

“Safe as houses he’s been, really. That’s the culture I’m trying to create. It would’ve been easy to bring someone unattached in.

“But if you’ve got the right players in building and have the confidence to bring them through, you’d be better off long-term with the way we’re set up.”

Team Lineup & Stats

No Player Yellow Cards Red Cards Assists Goals
1 Lucas, Josh 0 0 0 0
2 McKechnie, Ryan 0 0 0 0
3 Hutchinson, Harry 0 0 0 0
4 Halloran, Alex 0 0 0 0
5 Jackson, Sam 0 0 0 0
7 Godfrey, Alex 0 0 0 0
8 Williams, Josh 0 0 0 0
9 Whyton, Lewis 0 0 0 0
11 Grange, Adam 0 0 0 1
12 Morris, Ben 0 0 1 0
14 Coombs, Jacob 0 0 0 0
15 Howell, Josh 0 0 0 0