Burgess Hill Town 1, Needham Market 1: Hillians kick off season with a point

Hillians boss Ian Chapman
Hillians boss Ian Chapman

Burgess Hill Town begin their league campaign with a 1-1 draw at home to Needham Market.

Captain Will Miles started in central midfield, with new signings Tony Garrod and Hakeem Adelakun also making the starting XI.

Needham nearly found the lead inside two minutes when a cross found its way to Morphew but was kept out thanks to a point blank save from Max Huxter.

Adelakun and Sam Fisk saw both efforts from the left fly just wide of the far post in what was a mostly quiet first half.

In the second half, Adelakun nearly found the opener when his free-kick ricocheted off the crossbar and had Danny Gay in goal beaten.

Needham took the lead from the following goal-kick. A long ball was headed away to the feet of Callum Harrison who controlled and finished well into the bottom left.

In front of a cheering home crowd, Hill began to pile on the pressure. Will Miles and Aaron Smith-Joseph saw efforts held by Gay.

The Hillians had two penalty shouts turned down by referee John Pike before finding an equaliser. Substitute Matt Nezval took the ball in his stride, turned his defender and slotted the ball home to score on his debut.

Hill were unlucky not to find a winner as Miles’ shot was blocked off the line by his teammate Diallo. Nezval’s header over with two minutes to go was the last chance of the game in what was a fair result for both sides.

Hill now travel Kingstonian (playing at Leatherhead) on Monday, kick-off 7.45 pm.