BRAKES got their return to the Southern League off to the best possible start after defeating Chesham United by a single goal thanks to a first half strike by Ben Mackey.
The hosts did not have things all their own way against at the newly named Phillips 66 Community Stadium on Saturday and had an inspired Tony Breedon to thank for keeping a clean sheet and securing all three points.
The new club captain pulled off a string of important second half saves to ultimately help win the game for Brakes after Mackey’s 28th minute strike had edged them ahead.
The visitors had the most of what early running there was and forced a string of early corners without really extending Breeden too much.
Dave Pearce drove a low shot wide while Richard Taundry fired a free kick over the bar at the other, and the lively Ryan Blake saw a shot saved by Breeden.
Brad Wadkins missed a great chance to head the Generals in front when he missed the target from close range.
And this was put into even greater focus minutes later when the returning Mackey fired Brakes ahead after beating his marker on the edge of the area before curling a low shot beyond the dive of Chesham’s debutant keeper George Legg
The visitors continued to press in the second half but came up against an impenetrable wall in the form of Breeden, who kept out Sam Youngs’ header before at the other end Legg clawed Edwards’ effort behind for a corner.
The Leamington keeper then left Matt Taylor holding his head in his hands wondering how he had not scored when he showed lightening reactions to keep out a headed effort from point blank range.
But perhaps his best save of thr match came soon afterwards as Pearce was thwarted as he attempted to fire in Toby Little’s driven cross from the left.
Michael Williams came closest to adding to Leamington’s lead late in the second half when his low drive into the near post was smothered by Legg.
The substitute then set up Taundry to curl a shot over the bar as Brakes saw out injury time to claim what was a much needed win to kick off the campaign.