Welling put on good display to get well earned point against Havant and Waterlooville

Only three players started for Welling United who were on their books last season but they did not look like a team of strangers in their first game of the season.

Visiting Vanarama National League South championship favourites Havant and Waterlooville was always going to be a tough but they were well worthy of the point they earned.

Although eight players could be said to be making their Welling debuts, Sanchez Ming finished last season at Welling on loan from Dulwich Hamlet before signing permanently for the Wings in the summer for the second time in his career. Connor Dymond and Adam Coombes have also had previous experience with Welling, the latter making his fourth league bow for the club.

Roarie Deacon, right, opens the scoring for the Hawks

It was tight for the first fifteen minutes before Havant scored from the first real chance of the match in the eleventh minute. Jonah Ayunga created the opportunity and Roarie Deacon finished well from the right hand side.

Nicky Bailey then blasted a free kick over before Welling created their first opportunity but Bradley Goldberg shot over from a tight angle.

Nathan Green jumps a sliding tackle

Coombes fired a free kick straight at Ross Worner before Ayunga shot wide of the near post for Havant.

Both teams then had goals disallowed for offside. First Coombes bundled one over the line before Wes Fogden slotted home after Dan Wilks had saved from Ayunga.

However, Coombes was not to be denied for too much longer and levelled five minutes before the break. Goldberg was the creator with an excellent low cross and Coombes slotted home unerringly.

Adam Coombes slides in the equaliser

Ayunga hit the woodwork immediately after the break before producing an excellent save from Wilks who held onto his volley from six yards.

Havant continued to probe but Welling’s defence, well marshalled by Rob Swaine had all the answers.

Jonah Ayunga blasts a shot through the defence

Josh Taylor spooned over a rare chance for Havant before Luke Rooney curled just wide for Welling.

Substitute Alfie Rutherford had a free kick deflected over for Havant but Welling finished strongly and Joe Anderson and Jack Jebb both had shots blocked wide in the five minutes of additional time.

Welling United: Wilks, Ming, Anderson, Dymond, Swaine, Rich-Baghuelou, Cosgrave, Rooney (Agyemang 84), Goldberg (Jebb 64), Coombes (Anau 73), Green. Unused substitutes: Copeland, Okosieme.

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