AN INEXPERIENCED Newport County AFC side was held to a 1-1 draw at Bath City in their latest pre-season friendly.

County manager Michael Flynn took the opportunity to take a look at a number of trialists, one of whom scored, and youth team prospects on a soggy Somerset evening.

The Twerton Park pitch withstood the deluge of rain dumped on it all day but kick-off was delayed by 15 minutes due to the delayed arrival of several of the home players.

Once the action did get under way it was County who created the better chances in the opening stages, with Momodou Touray at the heart of the action.

Flynn is looking to bring in two new front men after seeing Ade Azeez ruled out for up to six months with a torn Achilles tendon.

But Touray, who excelled on loan at Barry Town United last season, is hoping to save the club some money by forcing his way into the first team squad.

And the Exiles academy graduate did his cause no harm with an encouraging performance, albeit against National League South opposition.

Touray tried his luck from distance after being picked out in space in the 12th minute and his shot was pushed behind by Bath goalkeeper Ryan Clarke.

His strike partner was one of three trialists named in the starting XI and the forward, believed to be former Boreham Wood player Brad Ash, volleyed off target moments after Touray’s effort.

Wales under-21 international Touray then produced a great turn and shot after being picked out by Marvel Ekpiteta, stinging the palms of Clarke.

At the other end, goalkeeper Tom King was almost beaten by a dipping cross from Joe Raynes that landed on top of the net and he then got down well to his right to stop Tom Richards’ low drive towards the bottom corner.

Matty Dolan, who looked a cut above everyone else on the pitch for the most part, saw a free-kick beaten away by Clarke.

And the breakthrough arrived three minutes before the interval when Ash was sent clear with a ball over the top from one of the other trialists.

The 23-year-old, who has also recently been on trial at Yeovil Town, produced a classy clipped finish to lift the ball over the on-rushing Clarke and into the net.

Adam Mann fired just wide for the hosts moments before the break and County went in 1-0 up.

South Wales Argus:

Ash and Trialist 2 were replaced by two more trialists for the second half, one of whom was Barry midfielder Tom Fry.

Youngster Dom Jefferies impressed at right wing-back and Mark O’Brien got a good 90 minutes under his belt, but the hosts began to seize the initiative as the second half wore on.

Bath substitute Andy Watkins almost made an instant impact as he flashed a shot wide after a poor clearance from King.

Tyler Harvey went close with a dipping effort that just cleared King’s bar and Watkins saw a low drive deflected behind.

Flynn withdrew King, Lazar Stojsavljevic, Dolan, Touray and Trialist 1 midway through the second half and gave academy players Callum Brain, Jay Williams, Callum Jones, Elis Watts and Ryan Hillier a chance to show what they can do.

After so many changes, it was perhaps inevitable that Bath looked the better side in the closing stages and they deservedly levelled in the 73rd minute when substitute Ross Stearn beat Brain with a fierce drive from 20 yards.

Raynes went close to forcing a winner for the Romans before the end but the youthful Exiles XI held on to earn a draw.

County: King (Brain, 62); Ekpiteta, O’Brien, Stojsavljevic (Williams, 62); Jefferies, Trialist 1 (Jones, 62), Dolan (Watts, 62), Trialist 2 (Trialist 4, 46), Evans; Touray (Hillier, 62), Trialist 3 (Trialist 5, 46)