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Evo-Stik Southern League 2015/16

Premier Division


Poole Town   3 - 0   Cirencester Town

Match Report by Dave Pyzer  


Cirencester travelled to meet second placed Poole Town in their latest Premier Division league fixture.

On current form, based on the ‘6 Match Form Guide’, the home side are top of the Division whilst Cirencester following their recent slump in form are 20th.

The Cirencester starting eleven had a few changes from the last league match against Frome Town with Aidan Bennett moving to right back in place of the suspended Shayne Anson, Ellis Dunton and Zack Kotwica returning at left back and right wing respectively (following injury) and Brad Hooper in mid-field.

Josh Parsons also took a seat on the bench following his recent absence through injury.

Cirencester kicked off on a cloudy day and almost immediately Poole won the ball and attacked down the left channel through Luke Roberts who carried the ball into the visitor’s penalty area where a well timed tackle from Mark Pritchett stopped him in his tracks.

Connor Thompson played the ball towards Zack Kotwica on a run down the left flank but an alert Jamie Whisken came across to kick the ball off the pitch for a Cirencester throw in the left corner. As Cirencester looked for an opening Poole won the ball and switched play to their left flank as they began a counter attack through Jack Dickson. A covering James Mortimer-Jones managed to delay his progress in the Cirencester penalty area enabling Glyn Garner to collect the loose ball.

A few minutes later the tall Michael Walker launched the ball forward from inside his half to the right corner for Luke Burbidge to collect and he immediately drove towards the bye-line where Ellis Dunton managed to win the ball and start a counter attack but Poole were soon back again as Steve Devlin carried the ball down the left channel of the Cirencester penalty area and attempted to cross but it was turned behind for a corner kick. When the kick came in Will Spetch and Jamie White got their heads to the ball but neither threatened the Cirencester goal.

During the first quarter hour Poole applied a lot of pressure on Cirencester as Walker headed a corner kick wide of the left post and a cross-field pass from Devlin resulted in a free kick on the right that was defended.

A sequence of passes from Cirencester involving Thompson, Aidan Bennett and Adam Connolly, as they worked the ball down the right flank, created an opening for Connolly but his shot from the front edge of the penalty area was blocked.

The home side countered with a strong run down the right channel from Burbidge who evaded three tackles as he made progress into the Cirencester penalty area and shot wide of the left post.

During the next ten minutes Burbidge was heavily involved in the action for the home side as he created opportunities for Devlin and Dickson and shot wide of the right post himself.

As the half hour mark approached Thompson slipped the ball through for a charging Brad Hooper but the alert Nick Hutchings in the home goal dropped on the ball at his feet to bring the danger to an end.  

A minute later Charlie Griffin played a clever ball through the advanced home back four into space in the right channel enabling Kotwica to use his pace to collect - resulting in a 1v1 with Hutchings. As he entered the front edge of the area Kotwica fired a right footed shot at goal that Hutchings did well to get down to parry – pushing the ball to his left and wide of his goal. Kotwica collected the ball and from a narrower angle shot at goal again but Hutchings had regained his feet and covered the post to make a second save.

Cirencester were getting more involved in an attacking sense and won a free kick, 25 yards out – right channel, that Griffin stepped up to take sending his kick towards the top right corner. Hutchings scampered across his goal and leapt to his left to tip the effort over the bar for a corner kick that was defended.

With seven minutes of the half remaining James Mortimer-Jones moved the ball on to Thompson on the left side of the home penalty area. Thompson held the ball, threatening to cut right but instead slipped the ball down the line to an overlapping Dunton who crossed from the bye-line and Hutchings just managed to push the ball away from under his cross-bar.

The Poole response was an attack down their right and a cross from the bye-line to the back post for Dickson but Bennett was on hand to block near his right post.

A minute later Roberts tried a turn and shot from right of the penalty spot that required Garner to dive full length to his right to save.

As the half drew to a close Cirencester worked the ball down the left with Thompson and Dunton, then back to Hooper who switched the ball right to Bennett and he sent it forward to Kotwica in the corner. When the cross came in Hutchings caught it under his cross-bar.

Half Time:   0 – 0.

In the opening minutes of the second half Hutchings brought a gasp from the home support as he coolly side-stepped a challenge from Griffin on the left side of his 6 yard box before moving the ball out to Lewis Tallack.

Within a minute Cirencester were back as they won a free kick on the right flank that Kotwica sent towards the penalty spot where Dunton headed over the bar.

Poole then quickly broke down the left channel but the resulting cross went past the far right post.

The home side were putting the Centurions under some pressure and ten minutes into the half White received the ball on the right and struck a fierce right footed shot that crashed against the cross-bar and rebounded to the left flank for Devlin to send back towards goal where Dunton cleared.

The deadlock was broken on the hour as Burbidge received the ball 15 yards inside the Cirencester half and began to advance down the right channel before cutting back and sending a left footed cross towards the far left post where STEVE DEVLIN made a blind side run to volley into the net from a yard.  1-0.  

The Cirencester response was immediate as Hooper released Kotwica down the right channel and his shot from 25 yards was saved low down by Hutchings at full stretch.

A minute later Poole replaced White with Toby Holmes and he was immediately involved as he used his pace to attack the right channel resulting in a free kick that was blocked.

With Cirencester pushing forward to try and get back on terms Poole were using their wide men, Burbidge and Dickson, and Holmes to attack the space behind an advanced defence and just short of the half hour mark of the second half Burbidge crossed into the 6 yard box where Bennett managed to deflect an effort from close range over the bar.

The pressure was mounting and a few minutes later the home side increased their lead following a free kick, from 25 yard – right channel, that STEVE DEVLIN tucked inside the right post.  2-0.

With five minutes of normal time remaining TOBY HOLMES scored the final goal of the game when he was on hand to tap home from a yard, inside the right post, as the ball came from the left evading defenders en-route. 3-0. 

In the dying moments of the match Glyn Garner pulled off an amazing point blank save as Corby Moore struck the ball from the edge of the 6 yard box and Garner showed incredible reflexes as he instinctively reacted by sticking his hand out to block.  

Final Score:  3 - 0.

The Centurions defended well in the early stages of the first half and gradually played their way into the match finishing the half going forward with more conviction but everything changed when they conceded the first goal.

Poole exploited the space behind the Cirencester back line as the Centurions pushed forward searching for an equaliser and used their home advantage to full effect – using the width of the pitch and adding pace to their attack.

Cirencester enjoyed some good moments but not enough to trouble a well organised home team who showed why they are top of the form guide.  


Attendance:     358

Referee:          Matthew Lee


Poole Town:

1.   Nick Hutchings

2.   Lewis Tallack

3.   Will Spetch

4.   Michael Walker

5.   Jamie Whisken   (C)

6.   Carl Pettifer    

7.   Luke Burbidge      

8.   Steve Devlin                                   60, 77

9.   Jamie White                     

10.  Luke Roberts                                                         

11.  Jack Dickson


12.  Alan Connell

13.  Tom Rees

14.  Lewis Lindsay                     (Will Spetch-78mins)

15.  Corby Moore                      (Luke Roberts-68mins)                         

16.  Toby Holmes                      (Jamie White-63mins)  85                               


Cirencester Town:

1.   Glyn Garner

2.   Aidan Bennett

3.   Ellis Dunton                       

4.   Mark Pritchett                              

5.   Adam Connolly                                                       

6.   Leigh Henry            (C)    

7.   Brad Hooper                                           

8.   James Mortimer-Jones

9.   Charlie Griffin                                                      

10.  Connor Thompson

11.  Zack Kotwica                                             


12.  Josh Parsons                      (Brad Hooper-68mins)

14.  Ollie Knight                        (James M-Jones-82mins)         

15.  Ross Langworthy                (Connor Thompson-74mins)      

16.  Ben Brown

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