Puritans make their point as Coalville preserve unbeaten record
Banbury United had to be content with a solitary BetVictor Southern League point following Saturday's 1-1 draw with Coalville Town.
Giorgio Rasulo gave United the early lead but Joe Doyle-Charles hit a stunning late equaliser to preserve Coalville's unbeaten record. United finished the game with only ten men following Jack Westbrook's red card for denying a goal-scoring opportunity.
Kynan Isaac came straight in at left-back on his return to the club with Eddie Odhiambo adding some experience to the midfield. But club captain Ricky Johnson was ruled out through injury and Lee Henderson was suspended so Westbrook partnered Connor Roberts in central defence.
Coalville arrived at the Banbury Plant Hire Community Stadium boasting the only unbeaten record in Premier Central and the visitors had an early chance when Tim Berridge found himself with just Jack Harding to beat. But the United keeper saved with his feet and Alexander Dean could only find the side-netting from the loose ball.
And it was United who broke the deadlock in the sixth minute when Pablo Haysham picked out Rasulo who took one touch before he beat the advancing Saul Deeney with a neat finish into the far corner of the net.
Tommy McGlinchey fired over and Kairo Mitchell's header was just too high as Coalville looked for a quick response. Coalville went on to enjoy plenty of possession and showed just why they have made such an impressive start to the season.
In a fast and furious first half, Coalville kept pushing for the equaliser with the impressive Luke Shaw their main architect. United had to work hard to keep them out with Westbrook and Roberts having to be at their best to do so.
United still looked a threat on the counter-attack with the lively John Mills linking up well with Jaanai Gordon. United had a couple of half-chances before the interval with Claudio Dias firing over from the best of them.
Coalville picked up from where they left off after the restart and from their third corner in quick succession Berridge headed straight at Harding. But substitute Amer Awadh was only inches away from doubling United's advantage with his first touch after being cleverly set up by Mills.
Another quick break ended with Rasulo shooting straight at Deeney from 25 yards after Mills again did well to hold the ball up. But Coalville's pressure finally paid off in the 75th minute when Doyle-Charles hit a stunner from 35 yards which flew into the top corner of the net.
Coalville sensed a late winner and Doyle-Charles saw another drive deflected wide and from Shaw's ensuing corner Charlie Hawtin had to clear the ball off the line.
Westbrook got a straight red card in the 83rd minute when he pulled Mitchell back after the Coalville striker broke free. Doyle-Charles fired the ensuing free-kick over the bar. Coalville went all out for the three points but United were not to be denied and they held out for a point.