Town 2 Oldham Athletic 1
Town: Chris Weale, Ryan Woods, Tamika Mkandawire (c), Joe Jacobson, Dave Winfield, Adam Reach, Jon Taylor (Darren Jones 90), Dave McAllister, Luke Summerfield, Tom Eaves, Aaron Wildig (Nicky Wroe 70)
Subs: Joe Anyon, John Marsden, Paul Parry, Tom Bradshaw, Cameron Gayle,
Oldham Ath: Mark Oxley, Connor Brown, Jonathan Grounds, Genserix Kusunga (Anton Rodgers), James Tarkowski, Korey Smith (c), Adam Rooney (Kirk Millar), David Mellor, Jonson Clarke-Harris, James Dayton (Sidney Schmeltz), Michael Petrasso
Subs: Carl Winchester, Cliff Byrne, Ellis Plummer, Paul Rachubka
Referee: Mr S Duncan
Assistants: A. Greenwood & D. Markham
Fourth Official: M. Coy
Attendance: 3669 (292)
Town made just one change to the side which lost 1-0 at home to Preston North End on Sunday. Aaron Wildig is favoured in a new-look five man midfield for Shrews with Tom Eaves operating as a lone striker and Tom Bradshaw back on the bench.
The opening quarter of an hour was a pretty even affair with both sides getting the ball down and looking to play football.
The heavy rain that was falling before the game continued and the high winds were still blowing through Boundary Park and it was making conditions challenging for both sides.
Town took the early advantage when a ball back to the Oldham goal saw Mark Oxley looking for his defenders to knock back to him but Tom Eaves got in and made a nuisance of himself, the ball dropped and Jon Taylor nicked in before Oxley could collected and calmly slotted the ball into the empty net to make it 1-0 to Town.
It was still a pretty even game with both sides looking to play despite the conditions and both were getting chances. Town were giving a good showing of themselves and were still taking the game to the home side but weren't testing Oxley in the Oldham goal.
Oldham managed to get back on level terms on 34 minutes from a corner, the ball was swung over and Town managed to block, the ball fell in the area and there was Jonathan Grouds who curled his foot round the ball to drive it home through a crowded penalty box.
Town crafted a good opening at the start of the second half when Mkandawire came out of defence with the ball and put play to Summerfield, he looked up and played a great crossfield ball to find Reach on the left, he brought the ball down nicely and then drove in towards the Oldham goal before flashing a shot across the face of the goal.
Oldham created a great chance when the ball dropped to David Mellow on the edge of the Town box, he hit in a lovely snap shot that was flying into the Town goal but Chris Weale had other ideas and pulled off a superb save to keep the score at 1-1.
Town weathered some good pressure for Oldham where they pulled a great save out of Weale and also hit the Town post. A ball down field found Eaves who flicked the ball on towards goal, Wilding showed good pace to put pressure on the Oldham defender and then nick a shot past Oxley and across the face of goal but it rolled wide of the target.
Town were back in front with 15 minutes of the half with a great goal, it started with a throw from Jacobson to Summerfield, he looked up and played a great ball in to find Wildig in on goal, he hit in a lovely shot past Oxley but the post saved the home side but Wilding was alert to receive the rebound and drive the ball in low and into the back of the net to make it 2-1 to Town.
Oldham were still pressing and putting the pressure on Town but the visitors were holding strong and putting in the hard work to keep the home side at bay. There were good chances for Oldham but Weale was strong, Mkandawire, Woods and Jacobson were on hand with headers and clearances to clear their lines.
Graham Turner made the two changes with Nicky Wroe coming on to replace Aaron Wildig and then as the officials somehow found 6 minutes of added time Darren Jones came on to replace Jon Taylor as Town looked to take the points.
Town dug in during the added time and did all they could to get the ball away from the Town goal, balls into the corners, attempts to keep the ball around the Oldham goal and even Chris Weale picking up a yellow card for not restarting play quickly enough for the referee but in the end Town start 2014 with a victory.
Town 2 Oldham 1