WARMINSTER Town steadied the ship in the Toolstation First Division with a gritty 1-1 draw at Roman Glass St George in atrocious conditions.

Experienced defender Kevin Shinn, returning after a knee replacement, bolstered a resolute back line that refused to conceded the game after Town had Charlie Walton sent off in the second half.

Eben Mortimer-Taylor opened the scoring from close range in the first half before his strike was cancelled out by Lewis Wentland deep in injury time.

Having been beset by injuries, Town manager Mark Breffit is counting the positives from the clash in Bristol, which was played out on the day Hurricane Brian swept in, and he has a number of players returning to the fold for the weekend’s encounter with First Division pacesetters Cheddar.

“It was horrible windy weather, it was no conditions to play football but we acquitted ourselves well and started well,” he said.

“They came on quite strong at the start but we defended well and played a bit of a high line and everything they put through went through to our keeper.

“We managed a few chances and went in one-nil up.

“In the second half we were down to ten men, one of their lads punched our lad and he punched him back but the referee only saw our lad do it.

“For the last half an hour our backs were against the wall defending in the wind and rain.

“There were eight minutes of injury time and they scored in the 97th minute, it was a handball as well which the referee and linesman didn’t see.

“We felt we deserved the three points for the last half-an-hour defending.”

Jack Miluk and Lewis Graham will return against third-placed Cheddar this weekend, adding firepower to a side that had been playing with a lone striker, a makeshift backline and youngsters brought in for cover.

Breffit said: “It will be hard as they have good players and play good football.

“Charlie Walton has also received a three-match ban but we both strikers back and should have enough to trouble them.

“If we defend properly we should have a chance and we also have Kevin Shinn back who is strong physically and strong mentally.

“He’s been out for four months and we have told him to take it slowly, but he’s ex-Army and he won’t say no. It’s a massive boost. “We’ve been inconsistent but there’s nothing stopping us putting a run together.”

Elsewhere, Westbury United remain top of the table despite suffering a 2-0 defeat away at Bishop Sutton in midweek, while Corsham Town lost 1-0 at home to Welton Rovers on Saturday.