SLOUGH Town joint-manager Neil Baker is a little disappointed not to have taken all three points after a 1-1 draw with Hampton & Richmond Borough on the opening day of the National League South season on Saturday.

The Rebels conceded inside three minutes at Arbour Park as the visitors launched a counter-attack and Zak Joseph squeezed a shot past keeper Jack Turner and inside the post with his left foot.

Slough improved as the match went on and equalised when Warren Harris headed a cross from George Wells down past Tom Lovelock and into the net at the back post in the 25th minute.

The home team were much the better side in the second half and were unfortunate not to score and secure all three points.

Chris Flood ran at the Hampton defence and beat four defenders before seeing his left-foot shot come back off the inside of the far post – the striker was already celebrating when the ball hit the woodwork.

Substitute Scott Davies curled a free-kick towards goal but Lovelock did brilliantly to get two hands to the ball at full-stretch, before Sam Togwell headed against the bar from a Davies free-kick.

Baker told the Observer: “It wasn’t the best start going a goal down after three minutes.

“We had actually started alright as James Dobson had a free-kick, but they’ve gone down the other end and scored with their first attack.

“We didn’t start great and were a little bit nervous in the first 15 minutes, but after that we got into our stride and started to ask a lot more questions of them.

“We got level from a great ball in from George and what Warren does really well, he comes in at the back post and heads it in.

“I’m pleased we scored so early and then we were pretty much in control of the game.

“We didn’t have loads of chances that I would say are clear-cut but they’re still good chances.

“Hampton could have gone two goals up but Lee Togwell cleared one off the line, and outside of that they didn’t hurt us too much.

“The boys have worked their socks off in horrendous heat. It’s horrendous enough standing and watching let alone running around.

“We had three players come off today with blisters and that tells you how hot it is.

“We’re up and running and a point better off than we were this time last year after a first game, but maybe there’s a slight tinge of disappointment.”

He continued: “It’s a tough league that we’ve come into and nobody wants to lose their first game of the season.

“You work hard in pre-season and you don’t want to get off to a bad start. We did today but showed really good character to come back into it and on another day we win that game.

“Everyone thought Chris’ chance was in so that was disappointing, but we’ve got a point, we’re up and running and we’ve caused some problems. We’re reasonably happy at the moment.

“Last year we lost our opening game and you come away thinking what next, but we’ve got a point on the board and havea tough game on Tuesday when we go to Chippenham.

“We’ve got to try to back it up now and get a result at Chippenham.

“We’re a little bit disappointed we haven’t got the three points but we will take one.”

The Rebels make the journey to Chippenham Town on Tuesday (7.45pm) and Baker expects a battle.

He explained: “It’ll be a tough game. Chippenham have been beaten today at Hemel Hempstead down but Hemel are a good side so that’s not to be unexpected.

“We know we’ll be up there for a battle. We’ve got a few problems with blisters so we’ve got to see how they settle down, but hopefully we will be okay.”

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