Match report

Swindon Supermarine 1 - 0 Tiverton Town

   Wednesday 10/02/2010   Southern League Cup
Alan Reidy

Ever had that feeling that you wished you were somewhere else? That was the feeling amongst everybody concerned with Tiverton Town Football Club that made the trip to Swindon for the League Cup encounter against Supermarine. It was so cold that even the brass monkeys had brass monkeys on them, the Hunts Copse pitch started white and gradually became whiter, and Tiverton fell to defeat for the second time on the same pitch this season.

Martyn Rogers was voluble in his opinion that the game shouldn’t be played on such a surface prior to kick-off, equally as vociferous during the game, yet pragmatic at full time once Tivvy had succumbed to a single goal defeat at the hands of their fellow strugglers.

It wasn’t all bad, however. The referee marshalled the game in such a way that both tempers and studs stuck as much as possible, and while there wasn’t much in the way of free-flowing football, while conditions allowed both teams tried to play with a degree of verve and panache. Chris Taylor fired an early shot straight at Steve Book, a chance with which he should have done better, and just two minutes later Steve Cook nodded a free header at the Tiverton goalkeeper.

Two chances in as many minutes from Sam Morris went begging, and Jake Wannell cleared a Matt Robinson header off the line as Swindon looked brighter and adapted better to the icy conditions. But for all their trying Supermarine couldn’t find a way through, and Tivvy were not without their chances in an open first half. Joe Bushin sent in a looping header having met Alex Faux’s cross, but Matt Bulman backpedalled just enough to help the ball away from danger, and Jamie Hatch rammed in a low shot from the edge of the area that Bulman got down to quickly.

Adam Mortimer might have scored a hat-trick on another day but found Bulman in tip-top form as the Swindon shotstopper twice gloved out rasping shots, while on the stroke of half time Mortimer opted against heading and tried to bring down Elliott Frear’s deep cross only for Bulman to once again come up trumps at the far post with a reaction save.

As the evening wore on so the temperature dropped further and any flowing football soon became the thing of dreams. The grass crunched beneath the studs, even the linesman skated once or twice as the conditions became impossible on and off the pitch, and Tiverton reacted badly to the climate in a game they really didn’t want to be involved in.

Ady Williams beat Faux on the wing early in the second half but his cross was headed by Taylor and cleared from just inside the post by Mike Booth. And Williams was the next culprit to miss a fine chance as he latched onto a lazy Colin Marshall square ball and shot straight at Book when one on one. Lee Collier replaced Wannell, Mark Saunders came on for Mortimer, but there was no second wind from a frozen Tivvy side.

With fifteen minutes remaining the decisive breakthrough came. As fortuitous as it was for Swindon it was merited due to their dominance in the second half, and it at least meant that those in attendance would not need to stick around in the arctic climes of Wiltshire any longer that absolutely necessary. Taylor was again the architect, legging it into the left channel and then into the area. Taylor’s first touch was heavy, too heavy, but as the ball rolled out of bounds so Taylor pulled up abruptly, allowed Booth to collide into his back, and hit the deck. Taylor dusted the ice from his legs as Nick Stanley rammed the penalty kick straight down the middle. And that was the story of Tiverton’s League Cup campaign. It was cold and only 72 people cared enough to witness it.

Swindon Supermarine: Matt Bulman, Kyle Lapham, Danny Allen, Sam Morris, Leigh Henry, Matt Robinson, Steve Cook (Ashley Edenborough 57), Justyn McKay, Ady Williams (Luke Hopper 79), Chris Taylor, Nick Stanley
Goals: Stanley 76 (pen)
Booked: None
Sent off: None

Tiverton Town: Steve Book, Jake Wannell (Lee Collier 62), Alex Faux, Mike Booth, Adam Faux, Tom Gardner, Jamie Hatch, Colin Marshall, Joe Bushin, Adam Mortimer (Mark Saunders 68), Elliott Frear
Booked: None
Sent off: None

Attendance 72

This report ©2010 Alan Reidy