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Tiverton Town 5 - 1 Walton Casuals

Saturday 18/08/2018   Southern League Premier Division
Tivvy Archive

Since joining the Southern League in 1999 Tiverton Town have proven to be notoriously slow out of the blocks, and too frequently this has seen the Yellows lag behind and fail to catch up as the season has unfolded. Victory over Frome Town saw Tivvy secure a second win from two matches for the first time since moving out of the Western League, and a comprehensive victory in the inaugural clash with Walton Casuals ensured that the run was extended. With nine goals scored and two against, Town’s record is identical to that from their final campaign in the Western League ranks, twenty years on.

Casuals by name; naïve by nature would be a fairly diplomatic description of the visitors to Ladysmead [sic], although it is difficult to fully establish with any conviction exactly what Walton would have had about them, had the opening couple of minutes not have gone so horrendously wrong for them. Within 17 seconds Tom Bath had eased in the opening goal of the game on his 100th appearance for the club, having charged down an attempted clearance from Joe Hicks and then raced into the box to latch on to Harry Evans’ cross. A minute or so later Bath was at it again, this time with a header from a centre by Nick Hurst, and the visitors were reeling as Tivvy took an immediate stranglehold on the match.

The pattern of the game quickly changed, and we were able to see what Walton were all about: it transpired they were fine with the ball in the first two-thirds of the pitch, and poor when entering opposition territory; conversely, despite tightening up defensively their frailties were apparent, and Tiverton would have sensed there were plenty more goals in the game. While the away side were vehement in the intentions to play the ball out from defence, their shooting was wayward at best. Isaac Sarpong and Kyron Farrell both missed the target by some margin, and they needed to rely on a stroke of fortune when Ben Mammola put the ball past Liam Armstrong to half the deficit with twenty minutes on the clock.

Farrell curled a free kick well wide, and Levi Landricombe responded with a chipped effort into the hands of Denze Gerrarl as both teams looked decent by largely uninspiring for a period, but the Stags of Walton reverted back to the stricken deer in the headlights of an oncoming juggernaut when faced with the next meaningful chance from the Yellows. Hurst was upended by a combination of Sarpong and Oliver Robinson, chipped in the resulting free kick, and el Capitan Jamie Price ghosted around the back in a Kevin Hill-esque manner to head home unchallenged.

Tiverton has not been great and were level aside from the opening couple of minutes, but importantly the reality was that they held a two-goal cushion at the change of ends. We had seen little of the highly-lauded Yellows midfield triumvirate – so beautifully balanced on the face of it – and despite their advantage there was still plenty of room for improvement.

There was more purpose from Tivvy as they pressed forward early in the second half, and Levi felt he may have had a fait shout for a penalty, but the referee’s denial of the claim was of benefit to the masses. The ball retrieved wide on the left, centred and then partially cleared, all went to allow Evans to smartly tee up Michael Landricombe for the best goal of the game. Landricombe the elder crashed a volley from 25 yards into the top corner, off the underside of the crossbar, and well beyond the reach of Denzel, to register his first of the season, and one of the finest goals seen at Ladysmead for some time.

With a healthy cushion established Tivvy were able to revel in the comfort of the situation and went on to dominate the remainder of the game. A fifth goal came through River Allen, with Evans once again the chief protagonist with a bursting run a meticulous through ball which afforded Levi the choice of shooting or teeing up Allen.

Looking for more, Allen twice shot low and wide (including a free kick in Levi territory), while, aside from a speculative effort from Hicks there was little for the away side to get inspired by. Substitute Ethan Phillips shot over for the hosts, Levi’s cheeky chip hit the post, and the points were comfortably in the bag.

There will be sterner tests ahead, and Martyn Rogers, havind notched his 100th victory since returning to the club as manager in 2014, will not allow his troops to get ahead of themselves. Nevertheless, a perfect start to the season is a perfect build on a strong campaign last time out, and with depth to the squad there is a feeling that Tiverton will be able to sustain a genuine challenge at the healthy end of the table.


This report ©2018 Tivvy Archive

Tiverton Town 5 - 1 Walton Casuals

Saturday 18/08/2018   Southern League Premier Division
Simon Ellis

For a first ever meeting between the two sides, to say there were mixed emotions at the full-time whistle would be something of an understatement. The Yellows delighted with their third straight victory which by virtue of goal difference sees them top of the table, while the visitors four-and-a-bit hour bus journey home will have been a somewhat sombre affair and given them plenty of time to mull over the disappointing week they had had, after going down by three goals to nil at Hendon in midweek. Two goals to the good before three minutes had registered thanks to a Tom Bath brace, Ben Mammola then inadvertently handed Walton what would eventually be nothing more than a consolation on twenty minutes, before Man of the Match Jamie Price added number three before half time and then Michael Landricombe and River Allen completed the scoring soon after the break.

After falling behind as early as the second minute in the midweek victory over Frome Town, the start to their latest victory couldn`t have been any more different and the sort of stuff that dreams are made of. Just nineteen seconds had registered when Bath side footed Harry Evans cross home and a little over sixty seconds later Bath rose highest at the back post to nod home number two from Nick Hursts left wing cross. Cue the usual `Can we play you every week` chant but to their credit the Casuals, playing some nice neat football and using the pace of their forwards, eventually got themselves, with a slice of luck it must be added, back into the match when an Isaac Newton (no gravity references) cross was sliced into his own net by the unfortunate Ben Mammola and only some wayward finishing and excellent covering thwarted them in their attempts to draw level.

It had been poor defending that had cost the Casuals so dearly early on and lessons had clearly not been learnt when Jamie Price restored the two-goal cushion seven minutes before the interval, ghosting in un-noticed to head home from another precise Hurst delivery, much to the obvious disgust of keeper Gerrar Denzel. Denzel, though, would have needed a step ladder and a fortnights notice to get anywhere near the Yellows fourth goal shortly after the interval. Harry Evans cushioned header sat up perfectly for Michael, yes Michael, to hit the sweetest volley right footed from fully twenty-five yards that flew in off the underside of the crossbar for one of the newly named Ian Moorcroft Stadiums` finest ever goals and River Allen added his first for the club and the Yellows fifth on fifty-four minutes, tapping home from close range following an excellent passing move that eventually saw Levi Landricombe unselfishly set up his team mate instead of shooting himself.


Tiverton Town: Liam Armstrong, Josh Key, Nick Hurst, Jamie Price, Ben Mammola, Tom Gardner, Harry Evans (Harrison Davis 59), River Allen, Tom Bath (Jordan Rogers 56), Levi Landricombe, Michael Landricombe (Ethan Phillips 76)

Goals: Tom Bath 1, 2 Jamie Price 38, Michael Landricombe 48, River Allen 54

Attendance: 203


This report ©2018 Simon Ellis