Telford 0 Hereford 0 - Report

A game high on endeavour and commitment but where quality was lacking produced a goalless stalemate but reasonable entertainment for a Bank Holiday Monday crowd of 1,761.

Neither the Bucks nor the Bulls possessed anyone who was able to break the deadlock on the day – the game’s most exciting moments tended to involve either Kai Williams for the home side or the visitors’ Miles Storey.

The two attacking wide men caused the majority of the problems for the opposition, but ultimately their lack of composure meant that the good opportunities they carved out almost single-handedly went unfinished.

The Bucks went closest to scoring when striker Jason Oswell made contact with a cross but saw his effort rebound off the post.

The Bucks were more quickly into their stride in this encounter, and visiting keeper Brandon Hall had to be alert as the Bucks forced an early corner which he punched clear under pressure.

Barely a minute or so later, Bucks midfielder Elliott Durrell tried to catch Hallall out with a free-kick from wide of the left, forcing him to tip the ball over his crossbar.

The Bulls responded with a low strike across the face of goal and wide from Storey, who found room to meet a cross from the left.

Russ Griffiths punching away Hereford cross.

After 17 minutes the same player went close again from a similar position, beating Griffiths but again his aim not being good enough to find the target.

Williams, signed by Cowan after impressing in close-season trial matches, is fleet of foot, with Bucks captain Adam Walker calling him ‘the fastest player I’ve ever played with’.

He raced outside his full-back early on to give notice of his threat, then on 22 minutes did so again but slightly scuffed his shot wide of the far post.

Undeterred, Williams kept going, his arcing run and low cross just behind strike partner Oswell as the Bucks looked the more likely.

But on 35 minutes the visitors almost broke through.

Theo Streete, making his 100th Bucks appearance, slipped in possession and Ryan McLean stole the ball to race towards goal. With Nathan Pond covering, McLean got a near-post shot away that Griffiths turned out for a corner with his foot.

Barely a minute later, Oswell struck the post – he was perhaps unsighted by Ben Pollock in front of him as a cross from the right dropped to him, but he will be frustrated that his contact was poor. The half ended with a few little niggles between the sides, but nothing that spilt over, perhaps in keeping with the ‘almost, but not quite’ nature of the game.

Williams lashed an early angled shot over in the second half, Hall comfortably held an angled bicycle kick from Oswell and after 55 minutes another Williams run brought a shot that Hall parried but which wouldn’t run for Oswell to convert.

The Bulls replied through a Yan Klukowski effort after Storey’s cross was only partially cleared, the Hereford man’s shot rising but also glanced over by Pond’s head.

Brad Bood attacking down the right.

Williams just kept going and another darting run ended with a low ball through the six-yard box that begged for but didn’t receive a touch from anyone.

As both managers started to make substitutions the game’s flow suffered.

Streete fired a speculative shot over the crossbar, the Bulls’ Ryan Lloyd might have done better with a header from a corner and Griffiths and his defence repelled a late Bulls flurry.

However, the inevitability of a scoreless outcome became apparent.

It wasn’t a classic, but both Gavin Cowan and his Bulls counterpart Josh Gowling will be pleased to have kept a clean sheet, with both rebounding from losses on Saturday.

Cowan can also be pleased with the contribution of left wing-back Brad Bood – the 18-year-old product of the club’s youth side played his first full 90 minutes and at no point looked out of place alongside players with vastly more experience.

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