FOOTBALL: RUGBY Town started life in the Midland Football League Premier Division with a hard fought victory at Sporting Khalsa.
Khalsa, who have been prominent contenders for the Midland League title for several seasons, provided a stern test for Valley.
Town started the game well on top and scored twice in the opening half hour, but the hosts hit back just before half time and put Valley under sustained pressure during the second half as both sides missed key chances to score.
Dave Stringer made one change to the starting line-up from the FA Cup win at Coventry with Josh Ruff coming in to replace the suspended Josh Thornton.
Ruff was soon into the action as he capitalised on a poor defensive pass to play in David Kolodynski who then squared the ball past the keeper to allow James Dance to slot home his first goal for the club.
Rugby soon doubled their lead as more hesitant defending allowed Kolodynski to feed the ball to Ruben Wiggins-Thomas who smashed home a low effort past the covering defenders following a goalkeeping error.
The hosts pulled a goal back shortly before half time with a counter-attack following a Rugby corner.
Harry Holloway was dispossessed on the half way line which left Marvin Nesbitt a run at Valley’s defence.
He dribbled to the edge of the area before firing a powerful effort past Niall Cooper.
Kolodynski missed a couple of chances in the second half while Turner made an excellent save from Wiggins-Thomas as Rugby tried to kill the game off.
At the other end, Rugby had Cooper to thank for a number of excellent saves in the second half.
Khalsa played the final fifteen minutes with ten men as Mensah Kinch was given a straight red card for a two-footed lunge on Jamie Hall.
Valley Line-up: Cooper; K Rowley, Hall, M Rowley, Harris; Holt, Holloway (Ashby), Ruff (Print); Dance, Wiggins-Thomas, Kolodynski (Shakespeare).