Match report

Tiverton Town 1 - 3 Yeovil Town

   Friday 09/08/2002   Friendly
John Reidy

Earlier this week I found myself on the edge of a conversation. The discussion revolved around the relative attributes of certain fantasy/ space adventure/ time travel films and television shows. Not being a great fan of either medium I remained on the edge of the chat until the topic widened‚ as often happens in good conversation‚ to children´s programmes‚ and at last I was able to contribute with personal memories of Muffin the Mule....but we´ll not go down that road. The problem for me with the cinema is that too often the ´hype´ surrounding the latest box office bonanza can cause acute disappointment as the actual film fails to live up to expectation. It is a feeling that I can tolerate with football matches - after all nobody has written a review saying it was a brilliant game before I am able to judge for myself. The last two visits of Yeovil Town to Ladysmead are a case in point. Both times I have felt that Tivvy have had a reasonable chance of progressing into the next round of the competition in which they had been drawn against our Somerset neighbours. Both times the Yellows disappointed‚ failing to perform as well as they might and bowing out of firstly the FA Cup and then‚ last season‚ the FA Trophy. Perhaps things would be different next time. It was in this frame of open mindedness that I approached the final pre season game - hopeful of a good performance even though nothing was at stake. Despite the far from pleasant weather conditions a healthy number of visiting fans swelled the gate‚ hardly surprising considering the game coincided with the tapping of the barrels for the weekend´s Beer Fest and that the level of entertainment at Yeovil´s Huish Park pre season had been as exciting as watching grass grow. In fact that´s all that had been on offer as repairs and renewal of the playing surface had forced the Glovers into a series of ´away day´ fixtures‚ if a trip to Latvia could be called an away day. From the moment Steve Dunn‚ resplendent in this years latest fashion statement for Premiership referees‚ of deep magenta shirt and black shorts‚ blew his whistle to get things underway it was clear that Tivvy were in for another torrid ninety minutes. Yeovil came at them and within 90 seconds had forced a corner out on the left. Colin Pluck left his defensive duties‚ ploughed forward‚ found a hole in the defence and met the kick with a solid header that Steve Collis held without too much difficulty. Three times in the first five minutes Michael McIndoe found space out on the Yeovil right to cause near panic in the Tivvy defence. It was backs to the wall and all hands to the pumps for the men in yellow. McIndoe was ´robbed´ of an opening goal in the seventh minute when his looping header was scooped off the line by Rob Cousins and a minute later the same Yeovil man saw his driven free kick tipped away by Collis for a corner. Tivvy weathered the storm and as the clock clicked into double figures actually managed to win a corner - easily cleared - and then with 20 minutes gone created a chance themselves. Jason Rees waited for Nathan Rudge to move forward before flighting in a free kick from thirty yards out and central. Nathan reached the ball‚ headed across the goalmouth and when it was nodded away‚ met it again but sent it looping just over the crossbar to land in the netting on top of the goal. The Yellows were working hard to pull themselves into contention but it was the Glovers who were pulling the strings and Collis had every chance to show his parent club (squad No.22) his worth‚ bravely spreading himself at the feet of Abou Demba twice but having to rely on Cousins again when beaten by McIndoe‚ the Tivvy no 6 using his head on this occasion‚ to preserve the clean sheet. The home side did manage a couple of efforts themselves‚ a swift through the middle combination of passes leaving Scott Rogers to swivel and shoot from an acute angle but nevertheless managing to force the save from Chris Weale. As the Magenta clad middleman consulted his watch Rudge laid the ball into the path of Steve Winter who hit one of his rocket shots that worried nobody as the curve took it away from the goalmouth. A scoreless first half was something of an escape for the home side‚ but a credit to their persistence in defence. David Steele had replaced Luke Vinnicombe in the centre of defence after Luke‚ given his chance due to Steve Peters enforced absence‚ had incurred a head injury after half an hour. David didn´t look too at ease in the middle and two minutes into the second period he was even more uncomfortable as he gave away a penalty for some rashness on McIndoe. Lee Johnson made no mistake from the spot and Yeovil took an inevitable lead. Phil Everett had been the only fresh blood introduced at half time‚ at the expense of Antony Lynch‚ but made little difference to the penetrative power of The Yellows. The Glovers continued to carve their way forward and it was no surprise when a half clearance fell for their pint sized powerhouse Darren Way to volley home the second goal in the 53rd minute. We had to wait for the hour mark before there was a meaningful effort from the home side. Everett split the Yeovil defence with a lovely ball that set Rogers free of the last green shirted defender. Scott‚ though‚ failed to realise he was away and shot too soon‚ trying to place the ball wide of Weale. The Yeovil keeper was up to the challenge and almost casually down to the ball‚ holding it with the utmost ease. Both sides changed strikers. Tiverton bought on Richard Pears for Mudge and Steve Ovens for the almost anonymous Kevin Nancekivell (anonymous to the extent that I´ve hardly had reason to type his name this season and would have got it wrong this time had it not been for the ´spell check´). Ovens chased and stumbled his way through a couple of times but otherwise little changed and it was still the Somerset side that looked the most likely to score. There was a little hope for the home fans when with 15 minutes remaining Tivvy won a series of three corners and were pressing the Yeovil goal for two or even three consecutive minutes. The hopes were soon shattered‚ however‚ when out from defence sprang Yeovil‚ feeding that man McIndoe out on the left‚ who in turn sent in a cross that Antony Tonkin blasted past Collis to bury the game. Steve Winter has not had the best of pre seasons. The last five goals (v Aldershot and Yeovil) have all come from his side of the field - though that is not to say that he has been to blame - and he´s been kept so busy that he´s been seen in forward positions less than usual. It was Steve though that sent in the perfect cross for Pears to send a thundering header into the net to give Tivvy a semblance of respectability on the scoresheet. It was no more than a consolation. The pre amble is over. The serious stuff starts next week in Leicestershire. All six games the Yellows have played have been against higher graded opposition. They have been tested. They should be match fit. Let´s hope their confidence has not been damaged by the lack of results.

Tiverton Town: 1. Steve Collis‚ 2. Steve Winter‚ 3. Paul Chenoweth‚ 4. Luke Vinnicombe‚ 5. Nathan Rudge‚ 6. Rob Cousins‚ 7. Kevin Nancekivell‚ 8. Jason Rees‚ 9. Jamie Mudge ‚ 10. Scott Rogers‚ 11. Antony Lynch.

Subs: 12. David Steele, 14. Richard Pears, 15.Phil Everett, 16. Steve Ovens, 17. Danny Haines.

Yeovil Town: 1. Chris Weale, 2. Adam Lockwood, 3. Anthony Tonkin, 4. Terry Skiverton, 5. Colin Pluck, 6. Darren Way, 7. Adam Stansfield, 8. Lee Johnson, 19. Abou Demba, 20. Gavin Williams, 11. Michael McIndoe.

Subs: 9. Carl Alford, 10. Nick Crittenden 12. Chris Giles, 14. Roy O´brien, 16. Andy Lindegaard, 17. Tom White.

This report ©2002 John Reidy

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