PRE-SEASON: Chippenham Town 1 Melksham Town 0
A LEE Phillips goal inside the first five minutes proved enough for Chippenham Town to beat Toolstation League neighbours Melksham Town in a competitive, hard-fought penultimate pre-season friendly of the summer tonight.
Chippenham Park goalie Lewis Porter filled in between the sticks for the Bluebirds whilst Mark Collier gave midfield starts to two trialists: former Burnham and Thatcham Town winger Ben McCready and ex-Newtown midfielder Zac Evans, who has signed for Conference South Bath City and could be set to pen a dual-registration deal at Hardenhuish Park.
Chippenham took the lead with five minutes on the clock, with Phillips getting on the end of Evans' knockdown before thumping the ball into the bottom corner.
Jon Beeden's volley from an Ellis Dunton cross wasn't far off-target whilst Jordan Roberts had a strike deflected just past the post off former Bluebirds defender Steve Casey.
Melksham did create an opportunity to level matters midway through the half when Gary Higdon nodded wide of the far post from Mike Perrott's delivery before Pring had an effort diverted wide on the stroke of half-time.
Five minutes into the second period, Matt Coupe's misplaced backwards header put the visitors' Nick Ridout in on goal but Porter got down well to save the Melksham man's strike with his legs.
Will Stead stung the palms of Porter with a hefty effort from range whilst up the other end, substitute Omar Simpson cut in from the left flank and hit an effort which pinged against the outside of the far post.
Alan Griffin went close to doubling Chippenham's lead late on but could only head onto the bar from James Guthrie's corner.
CHIPPENHAM TOWN: Lewis Porter, Ellis Dunton, Pete Monks (Conor McCormack 59), Matt Coupe, Jon Beeden, Bryan Smith (Iain Harvey 59), Zac Evans (Toby Osman 45), Jordan Roberts (James Guthrie 65), Ben Pring (Omar Simpson 65), Lee Phillips (Alan Griffin 54), Ben McCready (Luke Ballinger 54).
MELKSHAM TOWN: Tom Drewitt (Rob Brown 65), Sayeed Ibrahim, (Stuart Greener 62) Ian Jefferey, Steve Casey, Dave Thompson, Will Stead (Jack Morris 65), Mike Perrott, Gary Higdon, Nick Ridout (Ash Barnett 59), Ben Thomson, Jamie Broom (Leigh Rogers 62).
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