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REPORT | Wrexham AFC Reserves 0-0 Bolton Wanderers Reserves

Goalless draw extends unbeaten run

25 April 2023

Wrexham extended their unbeaten run in the Central League to three matches following an entertaining goalless draw with Bolton Wanderers at the Swansway Stadium in Nantwich.

Coach David Jones could feel well pleased with the way his young side dominated the first 75 minutes, centre-back Ryan Austin almost snatching a deserved injury-time winner with a powerful header that flew inches over the crossbar.

The Reds side had a youthful look to it, while the visitors opted to include four trialists in their starting eleven and, after a bright opening, Wrexham were forced into an early change. An accidental clash of heads in the Bolton penalty-area saw Reece Oliver forced to leave the field with a badly broken nose, Owen Cushion taking his place in central midfield.

When play resumed Wrexham were quickly on the attack with Jake Bickerstaff capitalising on a delightful pass from Louis Lloyd to force a fine save from Luke Hutchinson in the Wanderers’ goal.

Fine approach play from Reds’ captain Will Mountfield and Scott Butler provided the striker with another opportunity moments later, but his driven shot was just the wrong side of the upright.

The visitors only chance of note came after 17 minutes when an attempted clearance from Kai Calderbank-Park hit a Bolton forward, the Australian custodian was quick to make amends saving the trialist’s follow-up shot.

The closing moments of the half saw Bickerstaff denied twice, his first effort from Dan Jones’ cross being deflected wide, before Hutchinson produced another fine low save as the former Nantwich loanee bore down on goal.

Wrexham continued to press after the interval with Butler’s rampaging run down the right creating an opportunity for Lloyd, but his shot was well saved by Hutchinson.

Nelson Khumbeni then produced a fine block to deny Bickerstaff before Dan Davies headed wide from the resulting corner. A great turn from Bickerstaff created the space for him to test Hutchinson but once again the young stopper was on hand to deny the Wirral-born frontman.

The final quarter of an hour saw Calderbank-Park become the busier of the two keepers as he produced three good saves to keep the score-line blank, the best coming four minutes from time when he dived full length to fingertip Finlay Lockett’s goal bound shot over the crossbar. Then came Austin’s last gasp header from Cushion’s corner but it was not enough to break the stalemate.

Wrexham:  Kai Calderbank-Park, Dan Jones, Dan Davies, Aaron James, Ryan Austin, Scott Butler, Will Mountfield, Reece Oliver (Owen Cushion 6), Jake Bickerstaff, Malik Dijksteel, Louis Lloyd. 

Subs: Rowan Davies, Matty Hess, Caleb Hughes, Jacob Milner.

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