Harriers 2, Leamington 2

HARRIERS had to settle for an opening day draw after ten-man Leamington struck late to share the spoils at Aggborough.

Kidderminster found themselves behind at the break following a Josh March penalty but hit back through Ash Chambers and strike partner Ed Williams.

However, Leamington found a late equaliser from sub Kaiman Anderson despite having to play the final 10 minutes with 10 men after Jack Edwards’ dismissal.

Reds, lining up in a 3-5-2 formation, handed league debuts to Cameron Gregory, Correy Davidson, Rhys Williams, Cliff Moyo and Alex Prosser.

The clash was an evenly matched affair in the opening stages abs both side’s struggled to find a rhythm.

The first shot on target came the way of the hosts but Chambers’ drive from the left angle of the area was easily gathered by Leamington stopper Jake Weaver.

Leamington had joy themselves in the final third as Ryan Johnson blocked a low shot from Junior English after 16 minutes.

Harriers might have been ahead on 24 minutes but Milan Butterfield could make a clear connection after new skipper Moyo found him at the far post with an angled ball in from the right.

The home side started to get their passing game going approaching the half hour mark and again worked openings as Davidson drilled narrowly wide from range.

Despite that spell of pressure it was Leamington that took the lead from the penalty spot five minutes before the break.

Moyo was adjudged to have shoved former Alvechurch forward Josh March as they battled for the ball in the box.

March stepped up to convert the penalty himself and hand his side a narrow advantage at the break.

Harriers came out strong at the start of the second half and soon worked a host of openings as Davidson miscued a shot off target and Butterfield saw a curling effort from range deflected just wide of the post.

The hosts were level on 58 minutes when Chambers reacted brilliant to head home after Prosser’s powerful drive from 20 yards cannon back off the crossbar with Weaver beaten.

Harriers were ahead on 71 minutes when Ed Williams headed home from close range after a Declan Weeks corner.

Ryan Johnson met the ball in but could only send it skywards but dropping awkwardly into a packed six-yard box. Williams rose highest to meet it as keeper Weaver failed get through the crowd.

Matter got worse for Leamington on 81 minutes when skipper Jack Edwards saw red for a studs up challenge on Moyo as the Kidderminster man cleared the ball up field.

However, despite that setback, Leamington found a way back five minutes from time through substitute Kaiman Anderson.

The striker reacted quickest to sweep the ball home from close range after English had kept the ball alive on the touchline.

It was a blow for Harriers who will now quickly turn their attention to Tuesday night’s trip to Telford.

Harriers were soon back on the offensive as the clash entered six minutes of added time but couldn’t find a winner as sub Richard Peniket passed up a late headed chance and Butterfield blazed over the bar from distance.

Harriers: Gregory, Austin, Davidson, Williams, Moyo (c), Johnson, Week, Butterfield, Chambers, Williams, Prosser (Peniket 64).

Unused subs: O’Connor, Palmer, Higginson, Scott.

Leamington: Weaver, English, Gudger, Clarke, Mace, Lane, Murphy, Gittings (Mussa 77), March (Shamsi 80), Edwards (c), Keane (Anderson 63).

Unused subs: King, Hood.

Att: 1,551 (107).