Coleraine come from behind to earn point at the Oval

Glentoran celebrate Jim O'Hanlon's penalty
Glentoran celebrate Jim O'Hanlon's penalty

Coleraine had to make do with a point as they kicked off their Danske Bank Premiership campaign at The Oval against Glentoran.

Both sides made a bright start to the game as they enjoyed the August sunshine on opening day.

Despite some attractive football bing played by both sides in the opening exchanges chances were at a premium. It was 18 minutes before anyone had a real effort on goal, but Jimmy Callacher’s free kick was never going to trouble Wayne Drummond.

The hosts did break the deadlock shortly after though as Jim O’Hanlon was clipped by Aaron Canning in the box and the wide mann dusted himself off to score from the resulting penalty despite Drummond’s best efforts.

Howard Beverland went close with a header on 27 minutes, before the new Bannsiders skipper set up Gary Browne with a chance on 44 minutes, but the striker’s looping header dropped over the bar.

The hosts were on top at the start of the second half and former Coleraine man David Scullion was sent clean through on goal, however his weak effort was easily stopped by Drummond.

Coleraine were finally getting a foothold in the game. Substitute Shane Jennings crashed a shot off the bar on 71 minutes after Stephen Carson had sent him clear.

But he made no mistake a minute later as he headed in Canning’s cross from six yards to equalise.

It set up a franctic finish as both teams had chances to win it. Coleraine thought they had edged in front when Joel Bradley tapped in, but the teenager’s strike was harshly chalked off for offside. But neither side could make the breakthrough that would have won them the three points.

Glentoran: Morris, Kane, Magee, Scullion, Howland, Henderson (McGuigan 75), McAlorum, Callacher, O’Hanlon, McComb (Hughes 69), Bradley.

Subs: Clarke, Birney, McCullough.

Coleraine: Drummond, Canning, McIlmoyle, Beverland, Douglas, Hegarty (Bradley 56), Lowry, Harkin (Jennings 56), Tommons, Browne, Carson.

Subs: Ogilby, Owens, Watt.

Referee: Mervyn Smyth.