Home Match vs Bridport FC (TWLPD)
Saturday 10 January 2015
Toolstation Western League Premier Division 2014/15
Sherborne Town 1st
1-2 (Home Defeat)
In a match dubbed ”the Original Dorset El Classico” Sherborne welcomed Bridport to Raleigh Grove on a blustery day but dry Saturday afternoon. Manager Jamie Manley was forced to shuffle his pack following the decision of Ben Cochrane to leave the club for pastures new, in came Steve Friend recalled following his brace for the reserves last week at Cranborne.
The game kicked off and it was Bridport who were to threaten first gaining a corner in the third minute which was well cleared by the Sherborne defence.Matt Day earnt an early lecture from referee Roberts in the fifth minute following Days prolonged protest having been fouled a decision Robert never agreed with.
Sherborne were growing into the game quickly a sweeping move started by Burton who fed Hodges out wide, Hodges played a great ball across the Bridport penalty area where Friend was lurking but some good defence from Bridport meant under pressure Friend could only fire over Ashley Weeks in the visitors goal. Friend was in on the action minutes later again it was Burton who set him up but again he could only find the safety netting behind the goal.
The home side continued to dominate the game causing problems for the Bridport rear guard Haytor was cautioned for a cynical foul on Caines in the 16th minute, one of the days easier decisions for the man in the middle.Bridport seemed content to play on the counter attack and it was Hodges who came to Sherborne rescue with a great last ditch tackle to halt an attack on Beales goal.
The game was flowing as the teams exchanged chances in mid part of the half Burton glanced a header over Weeks’ goal then immediate after Beale has to be alert to palm the ball out for a corner at his near post. Sherborne got the breakthrough their pressure deserved in the 32nd minute when the ball was well worked to Caines who found space just inside the penalty area to rifle a shot past Weeks.The home side continued to cause Bridport problems but couldn’t find a way through to cause weeks any further problems as the half came to a conclusion.
The second half started really brightly for Sherborne Matt Day found himself in space and bearing down on weeks who produced a great fingertip save onto the crossbar from Days powerful strike.Caines was next with a chance but could only head Burton cross wide and a minute later Haytor stopped him in his tracks with a great tackle as Caines looked to pull the trigger.
Bridports chances were few and far between but they still posed a threat going forward Symes drove just wide in the 53rd minute.The 54th minute provided Bridport a route back into the game as Caines was late challenging for the ball just inside the Sherborne penalty area he was adjudged to have fouled his opponent and the referee had no hesitation pointing to the penalty spot,Caines bagged a caution for his protests. Dan Wise stepped up to slot the ball past the despairing dive of Beale who got his hands to the ball but couldn’t prevent it from reaching the back of the net 1-1 54 minutes played.
Bridport then bought on former Sherborne player Matt Morley in the place of Clarke.
Sherborne continued to create the better chances but Ashley Weeks the visiting custodian was in fine form this time finger tipping a Sam Jarman effort onto the bar, Hodges was the first to react to the rebound and looked certain to score before some resilient defending blocked the ball before hacking it to safety. Friend was next to test weeks but again the gloveman was equal to it.
Caines was again in the thick of the action, a fifty/fifty tackle in the middle of the park with Condliffesaw the latter earning a caution and Caines having to receive treatment.
The biggest talking point of the match came in the 72nd minute of the match after another fine save from Weeks just managing to get finger tips on a Sam Farthing header which slowed the ball from entering the gaol but leaving stuck in on the goal line a scramble ensued in which some clever defending saw Bridports Senior sit on the ball thus preventing any Sherborne player from getting at it without kicking him first, This duly happened and the referee gave a foul against Sherborne. For me the offence was deliberate obstruction and thus an indirect free kick on the goal line to Sherborne…..a brave decision for any referee to give!!
Moments later Caines was in the thick of the action once more chasing a high ball into the box he collided with a defender and then the keeper a late challenge not to the liking of the referee who duly brandished a second yellow card in his direction and sent him from the field of play leaving Sherborne a man down for the last 15 minutes of the game.
Matt Day was having a good second half causing the Bridport back line all sorts of problems as they struggled to cope with his pace but again some inspired keeping by Weeks saved his team again in the 83rd minute. The 87th minute saw Morley who was creating some problems for the Sherborne defence on the counter attack send a smart strike in on goal which Beale dealt with comfortably.
Bridport could not believe their luck moments later when again Morley was involved in a Bridport counter attack that led to a glancing header from Filkins heading goalwards across Beale the home keeper inexplicably let the ball through his grasp and into the net to give Bridport a 2-1 lead.
As an entertaining game was reaching its’ conclusion there was still time for Morley to blot his copy book and receive a caution for simulation.
Moments from the ned Sherborne nearly snatched a draw following a long throw from Montacute causing panic in the Bridport penalty area as the ball bobbled loose Farthing fired a shot over the crossbar.
An entertaining game of football played in the right spirit, with plenty of talking points that Sherborne could and should have won given the amount of chances they created.Bridport will be indebted to their goalkeeper for some top saves and to Sherborne for gifting them their two goals!