EVERCREECH 0 v BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 5
Town ladies cruised into the next round with this comprehensive win at County League side Evercreech.
Playing against a strong wind in the first half Town went ahead midway through the half when Jessica Chappell fired home from 20 yards. They were then awarded a penalty near the end of the half, but Chloe Stringer saw her spot kick saved by the keeper .
In the second half, Town were completely dominant. Daisy Goldsmith increased the lead and Anusia Rourke made it three mid way through the half.
Town were awarded a second penalty and Rourke made no mistake with this one.
The fifth goal came at the end when Rosie Williams volleyed home from a fine cross from Chappell.
Had it not been for many good and fortunate saves by the Evercreech keeper, Town could have been in double figures.
Next week the Ladies are back to League action with an away game against Stoke Lane, in Bristol.
Cheers one and all...
TWO IN AT FAIRFAX PARK...
Barring any unforeseen last minute techical hitches, manager Richard Fey has added two midfielders to the squad and hopes that the paperwork will be in order so they will both be available to make the trip to Chalfont St Peters for Saturday's FA Trophy Preliminary Round tie.
Both new recruits have been at Fairfax Park before, former fans' favourite Danny Wring and youngster Jake Mawford
Wring, who was once on the books at Bristol City and spent last season at Yate Town, has rejoined from Calor League Division One South & West rivals Clevedon Town while former Weston-super-Mare youngster Mawford has made the switch from Toolstation Western League Premier side Street.
Welcome back lads...!!!
Bring on Bath City...
Goals by Dean Griffiths (36 mins) and Bradley Middleton (71 mins) were enough to send the majority of the 321 fans at Fairfax Park home happy tonight (01 Oct) as Town progress into the Third Round Qualifying of The FA Cup with Budweiser following a narrow 2-1 win against Bristol Manor Farm.
The visitors will feel a bit disappointed at the result as they gave Town a good run for their money for long spells of the game - their goal came two minutes into the second half as was scored by John Lock.
Bridgy pocket £4,500 in prize money for the win to go with the £4,925 won in the previous two rounds.
Town now face Bath City in the next round which will be played at Fairfax Park on Saturday 12 October with £7,500 prize money at stake for the winners.
Hands off - our manager is going nowhere…
Frome Town FC have made a formal approach to the club for permission to talk to first team manager, Richard Fey with regard to the vacancy following the recent departure of Derek Graham at the Badgers Hill club.
Bridgwater Town chairman, Pat Parker has indicated to his opposite number that Richard Fey is an integral part of the immediate future of our club and as such is not on the market - in fact, final negotiations are taking place to finalise a three year contract between the two parties.
90 minutes plus 2 yesterday (28 Sept) and....
Sat 28 Sept - NORTH LEIGH GO TOP
North Leigh moved a point clear at the top of the Calor League Division One South & West table on Saturday after a comfortable 4-1 home win over Cinderford Town. In one of only six games played in the league due to the FA Cup, Kieran Sanders and sub Jacob Walcott both bagged braces for Leigh – the latter in the final 7 minutes – to cancel out a Dave Bird reply for the Foresters.
Swindon Supermarine are third, but had to be content with a point from a 1-1 draw at improving Godalming Town. Luke Abrahart broke the deadlock by putting `Marine in front just past the hour-mark, but Chris Musgrove equalised with 16 minutes to go.
Merthyr Town moved into fifth spot after seeing off Fleet Town 3-1 at Penydarren Park. But the Martyrs had to come back from being a 13th minute Danilo Cadette goal down to win, thanks to Jamie Rewbery on 39 minutes, Ryan Prosser on 57 minutes and Ian Traylor with 17 minutes remaining.
Taunton Town were beaten 2-1 away by bottom side Guildford City. After a goalless first half with neither side looking like scoring, Chris Young put Taunton ahead when he glanced home a cross by winger Craig Herrod. Guildford were back on level terms only 6 minutes later when Josh Clayman found the back of the net. Just when a draw looked certain up popped Ryan Bennard to net City’s winner 5 minutes into injury-time.
Tiverton Town edged out Thatcham Town at Ladysmead, thanks to a Dan Smith’s 71st minute penalty, while Wimborne Town swapped place with Bishops Cleeve in eighth, courtesy of a 3-1 win in Gloucestershire. Mark Gamble was the Magpies hero with a hat-trick after Joe Hanks had given Cleeve a 4th minute lead from the spot. Gamble levelled 5 minutes before the break and then completed his triple in the 79th and 85th minutes.
Second Round Qualifying - Round Up
Surprises involving Calor League sides saw Premier Division Truro City’s cup run came to an abrupt end at Toolstation Western League Brislington, who ran out 3-2 winners to reach the Third Qualifying Round for the first time in their history. Truro were in front after 10 minutes when Cody Cooke fired in an unstoppable left-footed shot that finished with the ball nestling in the corner of the Brislington net, coming down off the underside of the crossbar. The home side levelled the contest in the 21st minute through a Niekell Plummer glancing header, but 2 minutes later City regained the lead when Neil Slateford shot through a crowd of players after Brislington failed to clear a Paul Kendall ball lobbed back across the penalty area. The one goal advantage stayed with City until the 53rd minute when Brislington made the most of a corner not being cleared and central defender Danny Barwood hammered home from ten yards. And disaster struck for Truro with 8 minutes left. A break down the right finished with Lambert pulling the ball back for Mike Rimmer to slot home the winner after getting away from the City defenders.
Truro’s league rivals Burnham’s interest in the cup also came to an abrupt end with a 2-1 loss at Division One South & West outfit Didcot Town. Didcot only took 3 minutes to go in front when Pablo Haysham opened the scoring with the lead extended on 27 minutes when Nick Thorne scored. Burnham created few chances on a real off day. To add to the defeat Tom Willment was shown a red card for a challenge he looked to have won. Burnham with a man short came more into the game with Danny Burnell eventually finding the net in the final minute.
Another Premier Division side to lose to a Division One South & West outfit were Bideford, who conceded a 90th minute winner to go out at Yate Town. Owen Howe put Bideford ahead after 28 minutes but, despite being unbeaten in the league this season, they were punished for a poor second half as goals from Lewis Haldane and James Harmer turned the second round qualifying tie.
There were also some ‘near’ upsets - among them... High-flying Toolstation Western Leaguers Bristol Manor Farm earned a replay against Division One South & West visitors Bridgwater Town, thanks to an 85th minute penalty by Kyle Holly. This came after Manor Farm took a two-goal lead inside 8 minutes through George Brimson and a Kris Miller own goal, and then 3-0 up courtesy of Pete Sheppard in the 14th minute. The score remained 3-0 at half-time then Joe Bushin bagged a quick-fire brace as the comeback began. Dean Griffiths equalised just short of the hour mark, and then Mitchell Page put Town 4-3 ahead on 73 minutes before Holly’s late leveller. There was just enough time for Bridgwater’s Bradley Middleton to get what looked like the winner for the visitors in stoppage time but the ‘goal’ was ruled out for an alleged push by the Robins’ skipper.
Division One Central side North Greenford United will gratefully accept a replay after escaping Thurlow Nunn League FC Clacton with a 1-1 draw, thanks to a 83rd minute equaliser by Daryl Brown after Jake Clowsley had given the Seasiders a 43rd minute lead from the spot. And Premier Division leaders Hemel Hempstead Town now face a tricky trip to Essex against Ryman Division One North side Witham Town after a 1-1 draw at Vauxhall Road. Dave Pearce gave the Tudors an early 8th minute lead, but the visitors pulled level in first half injury-time through Kris Newby and held out for home advantage.
The Southern League saw wins against outside opposition for Arlesey Town, Rugby Town, Cirencester Town, Clevedon Town, Poole Town and St Albans City. Jeanmal Prosper’s early 4th minute goal sealed Premier Division Arelsey’s passage at Hitchin Road against Ryman Division One North side Thurrock, while their league rivals St Albans beat Ryman Premier Billericay Town 2-0 at Clarence Park with goals in each half from Mark Nwokeji and John Frendo. Rugby prevented any upset at Midland Alliance Blaby & Whetstone in emphatic style, hitting 6 without reply with braces for Seb Lake-Gaskin & David Kolodynski.
Premier Division Poole and Division One South & West sides Cirencester and Clevedon all triumphed against Sydenhams Football League (Wessex) outfits. The Dolphins went ahead against neighbours Hamworthy United when Steve Devlin scored after 7 minutes, only for Sam Lanahan to equalise just 3 minutes later. Marvin Brooks then restored Poole's lead on 20 minutes only for Dan Taylor to equalise again for the Hammers. After half-time, Poole went ahead for a third time and this time maintained their lead, with Dan Cann scoring and then Carl Preston sealing the win with the visitors' fourth.
Clevedon ended Sholing's interest with a 2-0 home victory. Sholing started brightly but two first half goals from Clayton Fortune and Ross MacNab put Clevedon in command and they never looked back. Cirencester knocked out AFC Portchester, beating them 2-0 with a goal in each half from Lee Smith. To compound Portchester’s misery, two of their players ended up in hospital, and one, Liam Crosswell, is still in Swindon hospital.
Going out to teams outside the Southern League were Division One Central side Chalfont St Peter, beaten by a 2nd minute Dan Smith goal for Ryman Premier visitors Lewes, while the Saints` league rivals Chertsey Town were beaten 2-1 at home by Ryman Division One South outfit Chipstead, who scored twice in injury-time from Junior Kaffo and Sam Spencer after the hosts had led since the 11th minute through Tom Betts. Ryman North side Needham Market ousted Division One Central side Dunstable Town 3-1 with Sam Newson, Ryan Charles and Luke Ingram outgunning Ryan Frater for the Blues.
Two goals in the last 5 minutes kept Weymouth in the cup at the Wessex Stadium against Ryman Premier Bognor Regis Town. The Terras looked to be crashing out after going 2-0 behind to goals from Ben Johnson from the spot on 61 minutes and Arron Hopkinson 4 minutes later, but a stirring fight back saw strikes from Stewart Yetton and Ben Joyce force a replay on Tuesday night. Another draw between sides from the same division saw St Neots Town earn home advantage after a 2-2 draw at Canvey Island.
Toby Osman becomes the lastest 'Robins' recruit...
First team manager, Richard Fey, has completed the signing of striker Toby Osman (pictured) from his former club Chippenham Town today (6 Sept).
Osman, formerly with Eastleigh and Frome Town, met with the club secretary earlier this afternoon to sign the transfer form so it could be processed by the league office in time for him to play against Fleet Town tomorrow (7 Sept).
The club would like to thank Chippenham secretary Angela Townsley and chairman Neil Blackmore for their assistance with the transfer and also Steve 'Jed' Collard for chauffeuring the club secretary to the meeting point with Toby in Bristol.
Bridgwater Town Ladies 3 Weymouth Ladies 1
Town Ladies continued their great start to their South West Women’s League season and went to the top of the Premier Division table with this latest victory.
Playing their third game in a week on a firm pitch with a strong breeze blowing from one end to the other Town made heavy going in the initial phase of the game.
Playing with the wind in the first half Town dominated proceedings but failed to make any headway when in the last third of the pitch. Vicky Tindall fired narrowly wide after 10 minutes and Sam Brass struck the outside of the post shortly after.
However, Town found themselves a goal down after 16 minutes. A rare raid into Town's half saw a Weymouth player hit a very high hopeful ball towards the goal from the left. A combination of the swirling wind and a strong sun caused Town keeper, Ami Ward, to loose sight of the ball and it floated into the back of the net with Ward desperately trying to keep it out.
This seemed to kick start the Ladies and Town put pressure on Weymouth. They were rewarded in the 23rd minute when a low right-wing cross by Chelsey Pitchers was met at the near post by Anusia Rourke, who poked the ball past the keeper.
With the strong breeze at their backs, Town kept the pressure on and went ahead in the 35th minute. A ball was hit into the penalty area and the Weymouth keeper fumbled the ball allowing Gabby Coles to nip in and score from close range.
On 40 minutes Town scored their third when a cross from the right was collected by Rourke who laid the ball back into the path of Rosie Williams who side-footed the ball home.
The second half was rather uneventful. Weymouth tried hard but centre backs Holly Cox and Abigail Chedzoy dealt comfortably with anything that came their way. Town found it hard playing against the strong breeze but nearly increased their lead when Rourke volleyed in a cross from the right only to see the keeper make a spectacular block.
Town played out the half comfortably and at times played some neat football when they kept the ball on the ground.
The was a great effort by the Ladies to make it three wins in eight days.
The Ladies are at home again next Sunday 8th September when they take on newly promoted Truro City at Fairfax Park. kick-off 2pm. Come on down and give them your support!
Five players received their marching orders as Taunton Town and Bridgwater Town fought out a 1-1 draw at Wordsworth Drive in an FA Cup preliminary round tie this afternoon (Aug 31).
An already simmering pot boiled over in the opening 20 minutes. The home side had three players booked before Bridgwater captain Bradley Middleton was dismissed for an alleged stamp – an infringement that resulted in Nat Pepperell slamming Taunton ahead from the penalty spot.
Taunton's on loan keeper Kyle Moore pulled off a stunning save from Aaron Wilson as Bridgy stormed back at their hosts.
The match was turned on its head when the home side had two players sent off in the same incident; Shane Kingston for allegedly elbowing Craig Loxton and Rodney Marsh for disputing the decision.
Bridgwater equalised after 64 minutes, Wilson expertly controlling a Dean Griffiths cross and dispatching a fine shot just inside Moore's left hand post.
The numbers were equalled up again ten minutes from time when Wilson copped a second yellow card for a late tackle on Jamie Price, but Pepperell became the third Taunton player to walk, for flattening Kris Miller in stoppage time.
Hostilities will be resumed at Fairfax Park on Tuesday night.
Meanwhile, Town's Reserves were unlucky to lose 2-1 at home againmst Watchet Town where a late goal won the points for the visiting west Somerset side.
Two points dropped - but still unbeaten...
Town remained unbeaten in the league after today's (26 Aug) home game against Wimborne Town which ended honours even at 1-1.
Dean Griffiths (pictured) gave Town a 33rd minte lead when he beat the Magpies' keeper from 15 yards to his left after latching on to a through-ball from Bradley Middleton.
Mark Gamble levelled for the visitors with ten minutes to go after Town's Aaron Wilson was shown a red card for foul & abusive language (allegedly) after an hours play.
Full match report to follow...
|IN THE NEWS(PAPER)...|
Division One South & West
Bridgwater Town took a first minute
lead and doubled it on the stroke of half time on their way to a 2-1 win at
Clevedon Town on Monday making it two wins out of two.
Tuesday's fixtures saw
five clubs join Bridgwater Town on maximum points with Paulton Rovers sitting at
the top after scoring twice in each half to set up a comfortable 4-0 home win
over Tiverton Town and Cinderford Town scoring three second half goals to win
3-0 at Bishops Cleeve while Cirencester Town, who had gone behind in the sixth
minute, scored twice after the interval to record a 2-1 home win against Evesham
Shortwood United raced into a three goal lead in the opening
twenty-three minutes and added another mid way through the second half to
complete a comfortable 4-0 victory at Stratford Town and Swindon Supermarine, a
goal up after nine minutes but level at the break, scored twice in four second
half minutes and, despite conceding a goal in the fourth minute of time added
on, won 3-2 at Didcot Town.
Taunton Town twice took the lead in the first half
but a goal seven minutes after the break secured visiting Yate Town a point from
a 2-2 draw but Merthyr Town, two up at the interval, completed a 3-0 home win
over Mangotsfield United while Fleet Town, leading at half time, conceded a
penalty two minutes after the break but scored six minutes from time to secure a
2-1 home victory against North Leigh.
Wimborne Town conceded a goal just a
minute after having taken a fourteenth minute lead but converted a penalty
before the interval to record a 2-1 home win over Godalming Town but Taunton
Town, who had twice led in the first half, had to settle for a 2-2 home draw
when Yate Town equalised seven minutes after the break.
Town gain three hard-earned points at The Hand
A goal by Joe Bushin after just 15 seconds set Bridgwater on their way to make it two wins out of two at the start of the season with a hard-fought 2-1 victory against Clevedon Town at The Hand Stadium tonight (19 Aug).
The remainder of the first forty-fiver minutes were well contested, a little too much so at times, and things could easily have got out of hand with some ‘tasty’ challenges going in from both sets of players. But Bridgwater created most of the chances with Chris Wright between the sticks for Town being untroubled for long periods.
The match referee decided to clamp down on everything from the start to stamp his authority on proceedings and issued yellow cards (no arguments about either) to one player on each side during the first half. However, the constant whistling and stop-start to the play interrupted the flow and the action became fragmented.
As half-time approached, Dean Griffiths doubled Bridgwater’s advantage which sent them in for the interval well on top and looking comfortable.
However, the second forty-five minutes were to be a different story as the home side, who included some familiar faces to Town fans; Ollie Barnes, Matt Thorne, Kye Mountford, and Danny Wring on the sidelines, upped their game and put the Bridgwater back line under considerable pressure for long periods of the half.
The mounting pressure told twenty minutes into the half as Ollie Barnes stroked home a needlessly given away free kick on the edge of the penalty area to beat keeper Wright to his right hand side - 2-1.
Town manager, Richard Fey, then showed his tactical thinking and used his three substitutions at vital times during the remainder of the game to break up the home side’s rhythm and Town held on for the win that puts them top of the Division One South & West table - for 24 hours at least…
Town team: Wright, Miller, Veal, Middleton, McGrath, Bater, Vance, Griffiths (sub O’Connor 75), Page, Bushin (sub Pilling 70), Wilson (sub Mercieca 88). Not used: Alexander, Thomas.
Goals Galore on Opening Day
Newly-promoted Stratford Town, two ahead at the interval, got off to a flying start in the Calor League Division One South & West with an impressive 5-1 victory at Thatcham Town on Saturday. Matt West and Phil Green both bagged opening day braces for the Midland Alliance champions, with Richard Gregory adding the other – Chris Patterson netting Thatcham`s consolation.
Another fancied side, Paulton Rovers, three-up at the break, also had a resounding away win, 5-0 at Godalming Town with two goals from Jake Harris and singles from Mike Perrott, Tom Billing and an own goal.
Bridgwater Town scored three times in the second half through Joe Bushin, Jon Vance and Brad Middleton to complete a 5-1 home win over Bishops Cleeve, whose Ryan Paddock replied after first half goals from Dean Griffiths and Kristian Miller.
Cinderford Town secured a 5-0 home victory against Fleet Town with doubles from Sam O`Sullivan and Lewis Sommers and one from Sam Hunt.
And Mangotsfield United were yet another side to go nap when they scored twice in the opening 3 minutes with a Ben Hunt brace and one from Jamie Reid before going on to defeat visiting Guildford City 5-3 with Ashley Williams and Dave Stone adding the others – Ben Walshe, Pat Cox and Andrew Dalhouse replying for switched City.
North Leigh, two ahead at the interval through Morgan Williams and a Jacob Walcott spot-kick, conceded a penalty themselves 2 minutes from time, converted by Ross Prosser but recorded a 2-1 home win over Merthyr Town.
Shortwood United scored twice in each half through a Mark Pritchett brace and Duncan Culley and Tim Haddock to complete a comfortable 4-1 home win against Didcot Town, whose Louis Joyce replied.
Swindon Supermarine scored twice in 3 minutes from Ben Whitehead shortly before the interval to defeat visiting Clevedon Town 2-0.
Cirencester Town conceded a Chris Holland own goal a minute after taking a 6th minute lead through Steve Davies but went on to win 2-1 at Tiverton Town with a second from Davies on 25 minutes.
Yate Town, ahead through Joe Chandler after 12 minutes, won 2-1 at home against Wimborne Town when Lewis Haldane doubled their lead on 56 minutes – Matt Kemble replying 17 minutes from time.
Evesham United and Taunton Town drew 4-4 in an incident-packed game at the Jubilee Stadium. The game contained eight goals, a red card late in the first half for home midfielder Neil Barnfield and injuries to both goalkeepers John Bateman (Evesham) and Lee Matthews. Taunton took just 6 minutes to open their account this season with Rodney Marsh scoring with a low angled shot after being set up by new striker Chris Young. But the visitors found themselves trailing 2-1 at half-time after Marcus Palmer and Carl Brown scored for the home side - in the 19th and 21st minutes respectively. New left-back Lewis Tasker levelled on 55 minutes but Matt Sysum beat Irish to put the home side back in front after 76 minutes. Tasker volleyed another equaliser in the 81st minute only for Sysum to put his side ahead again only a minute later. However, Taunton gained a point when new signing from Street, Steve Murray, a second half substitute for Nat Pepperell, slid in to convert a cross.
Fry Club 1 BRIDGWATER TOWN RESERVES 2...
Saturday's game was against top of the league side Fry Club who have just returned to the Premier Division after winning Division One last season. Their last two games were strong wins - 5-0 against Street Reserves and 4-0 to Odd Down Reserves - so Town’s Reserves had what seems a tough game ahead.
Manager Steve Laker took with him a 16-man strong squad and decided to go back to basics like his side did against Nailsea United in midweek, 4-4-2, and it paid off as Town dominated the first half and really played some lovely football. Jake Bennett and Tyne Govier were solid at the back and both worked the offside trap perfectly… Fry’s didn't know what hit them.
The only thing needed was a goal and Town had several chances to capitalise on their superiority but none were successful.
At half-time Steve Laker's squad went in 0-0 and they needed to come out in the same fashion as the first and boy did they as halfway through the second half Adam Long hit a wonder strike from 30 yards and it almost broke the net. GOAL! 1-0 top left hand corner, the keeper did not stand a chance.
The manager then barked out orders to his side to stay calm and not to rush the game, which they did.
Ten minutes later, and a free kick awarded to Town 15 yards inside the Fry’s half was taken by Zayne Simpson (from the first team). He hit a high lofting cross and their keeper went to grab the ball. It should have been a straightforward catch, but luckily for Town, due to the wet weather, the keeper fumble the ball and it trickled over the line for a goal - 2-0 (although Steve says it should be awarded to their keeper as an own goal).
At this point Town really needed to keep their discipline which they did for the most part, but they did let them in for a goal but it was their only real chance.
All-in-all - 8 out of 10 for this performance and now Town Reserves look forward to the match on Wednesday at home against Shirehampton (7.45pm).
A point for the Reserves as Nailsea equalise deep into stoppage time...
Manager, Steve Laker, was fuming last night after his side were denied what should have been a thoroughly-deserved away win against last season's league champions Nailsea United by a goal scored some eight or nine minutes into stoppage time when no-one present at the game - apart from the referee - could work out where all the added time came from.
With the return of a couple of the sides more experienced players who were missing for Saturday's heavy home defeat by Minehead, the team played some pretty good football and did more than enough to win the three points. But it wasn't to be as the home side equalised as everyone at the Grove Sports Centre were beginning to question whether the referee's watch had stopped.
First half goals by Jacob Bennett and youngster Harry Horton gave the visiting 'Robins' a 2-0 advantage at half-time, which was no more than they deserved. Nailsea pulled one back during the second period but didn't look as though they would be able to muster an equaliser.
Then, with the light fading and everyone checking their watches, Steve's troops were left heartbroken as the home side made it 2-2 in the 98th minute - the final whistle came just seconds after the restart.
Despite the bitter disappointment, the manager was pleased with the reaction from his players to Saturday's result and is more confident that his team's form will improve another level when he has a full squad to pick from.
On Saturday, the Reserve Team are away at Fry Club in Keynsham (3pm) while their next outing at Fairfax Park is on Wednesday evening (21 Aug) when Shirehampton are the visitors - 745pm kick off.
Meanwhile, in other BTFC news...
Sports Therapist Graham Webster (pictured) joins manager Richard Fey's backroom staff for the next few months as a replacement for Stacey Endacott and Jessie Ringland who were both forced to relinquish their duties with the club due to work and family commitments.
Graham has had loads of experience in football circles and includes working for clubs such as Taunton Town, Tiverton Town and Torquay United on his CV.
Graham is already known by a couple of the players who have joined the club over the past few weeks and they gave a little insight into his psyche (allegedly) - he has a predilection for a good drop of Port and top quality cheese and also enjoys a good sing-song...!!!
Welcome to Fairfax Park Graham...
On Saturday, after going 1-0 down early in the first half, goals from Chris McGrath and Geraint Bater before half-time earned Richard Fey’s First Team a hard fought 2-1 away win in their international friendly match against Welsh League side Afan Lido from Port Talbot.
The victory made it seven pre-season wins out of seven for the team as they prepare for next Saturday’s Calor League Division One South & West opener at home against Bishops Cleeve (3pm kick off).
Meanwhile… it was not a good day for Steve Laker’s Reserve Team as they crashed 6-0 at home in their Somerset County League Premier Division opener against Minehead.
Steve had most of his ‘older heads’ missing on Saturday due to holidays etc. and his youthful side were out-muscled by a strong and well-disciplined west Somerset side who are looking to make up for the disappointment of missing out on promotion last season due to ground-grading issues to earn their place back at Western League level this time around - good luck to them on the quest…!!!
On Sunday... In a game played at Bridgwater College, Bridgwater Town Ladies beat Pen Mill ladies 7-0 in their second pre-season game.
Fielding a mixture of regulars and trialists, the ladies had a comfortable victory over their County League opponents with the goals coming from Rosie Smith (3), Sam Brass, Sophie Harris, Chloe Crandon and Meg Hill.
Next up for the Ladies Team is an away friendly at Cwmbran Celtic next Sunday, before the new season starts the following week with an away game against last season’s South West Women’s League Premier Division runners-up, Bristol Ladies Union.
In other First Team related news, trialist Nuno Felix has decided that Bridgwater Town FC is not for him and manager Richard Fey has granted his request to be released so he can try his luck at divisional rivals Yate Town.
The build up to the new season continues tonight when a team from 'The States' visits Fairfax Park to play a BTFC XI .
The game against Whitman College will be a good run out for the Town players as (like all teams from the USA) the Americans teach their players to play football - or soccer as they call it...!!! - the right way and they are usually very good technically.
Kick off is scheduled for 7.30pm and admission prices are set at £4.00 for adults and £3.00 for seniors (60+) - juniors (16 & under) are FREE as they will be ALL SEASON FOR ALL GAMES.
After Tuesday's 3-0 away win against Wells City - goals scored in the second half by Craig Loxton (47 mins) & Dean Griffiths 2 (85 & 89) - the next outing for Town's First Team is on Saturday (3 Aug) when they take on Street First Team at Fairfax Park in a change to the originally advertised game.
Unfortunately, Weymouth were unable to fulfil the previously arranged match due to a forced change to their pre-season schedule.
Saturday's Round up...
Richard Fey's First Team were made to work hard at Longwell Green on Saturday before coming away with a well-deserved 5-0 win.
In a fairly physical first half, a goal for Town by new signing Joe Bushin was the difference between the sides at the interval and he went on to get a second during the second period.
Striker Mitchell Page, another new face at Fairfax Park, also added a brace during the second 45 minutes with Graham 'Goose' Mercieca rounding things off with the fifth.
Action for the team this coming week is an away trip to meet Wells City tomorrow evening (7.30pm) at the Athletic Ground then its Street First Team visiting Fairfax Park (3.00pm) on Saturday.
Back to Saturday... and Steve laker's Reserve Team met a strong Bristol City Academy side at Fairfax Park in a charity game in aid of Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research.
The game was an entertaining, well-contested affair with the scoreline of 4-0 to City not being a true reflection on the Town players' performance. Two goals late in each half giving the City Robins the win.
The organisers of the match would like to thank all those who attended for their generosity as a sum well in excess of £1,000 was raised.
This week the Reserves are away to local side North Petherton tomorrow evening (7.00pm), while on Thursday night a mixture of First & Reserve players will take on a touring Whitman College USA side at Fairfax Park with a 7.30pm start.
Town Reserves began their pre-season build up tonight (25 Jul) with an away game against Somerset County League Div 2 (West) Combe St Nicholas and came away from south Somerset with a fairly comfortable 3-1 victory.
Manager, Steve Laker took a 17-strong squad along and rang the changes to give every player a run-out and the lads rewarded him with a good solid performance.
Luke Manley opened the scoring for Town and the lead was doubled by Jacob Bennett with the "best goal he has ever scored". He received the ball from a quickly-taken free kick and let fly with a screamer from distance that sailed into the top corner past a stunned home goalkeeper.
Youngster Harry Horton rounded off the scoring for Bridgy with a glancing header near the end, but the lads then seemed to switch off as Combe got a consolation goal right at the death.
Next up for the Reserves is the charity game against a Bristol City XI on Saturday (27 Jul) at Fairfax Park - kick off 3pm - where a handful of employees from the Bridgwater Wickes store will be added to the team and given a run out.
The game is in aid of Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research so please come along and support the game.
A goal by new signing Joe Bushin five minutes into the second half proved enough to give the First Team a 1-0 win against Cheltenham Town at Fairfax Park last night (24 Jul).
The game was a very good workout for the players and the 'Fairfax Park faithful' were generally impressed by the new-look squad assembled by manager Richard Fey and his assistant Geraint Bater.
Many thanks to everyone at Cheltenham Town for coming to Somerset to play the game and we wish them "All The Best" for the coming League season.
Match Report To Follow...
In the first of their pre-season warm-up games the new look Bridgwater Town First Team were given a more than useful workout by Toolstation Western League side Willand Rovers this afternoon (20 Jul).
Manager Richard Fey and his assistant Geraint Bater took an eighteen-strong squad to Silver Street and they came away with the win in an entertaining game beating their hosts 3-1.
Goalscorers for Town were the returning Jon Vance and newcomers Kristian Miller and Dean Griffiths.
Many thanks to everyone at Willand for their hospitality and we wish you “All The Best” for the coming season.
Next up for the First Team is a home game against Cheltenham Town at Fairfax Park on Wednesday evening (24 Jul) with a 7.30pm kick off.
Bridgwater Town league fixtures for the 2013-14 season. Cup games will be added asap and the complete list will be added to the notice board section on the home page.
Tonight (16 Jul) First Team manager, Richard Fey added two new players to his squad as the team prepare for the start of the preseason games this coming weekend.
The first is midfielder Craig Loxton - formerly with Bristol City and Weston-super-Mare - who joins from Paulton Rovers, while also putting pen to paper on Southern League forms is Yate Town stalwart, defender Scott Thomas who impressed in training.
Both players are included in the 18 strong squad who will travel to Devon to play Willand Rovers at Silver Street on Saturday (20 Jul) with a 3pm kick off.
Another charity match
As well as the Bridgwater Wickes XI v Bristol City XI charity match in aid of Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research, a Bridgwater Town Fans XI will be taking on players from across all of our teams, including the First Team, Reserves and Ladies.
The match is scheduled to take place on Sunday 4th August and is supported by Musgrove Leukaemia Research Somerset. They will be holding a raffle in the bar after the game and post match entertainment includes a disco and a bouncy castle for the kids. The bar and Red Rose CafÃ© will also be open.
A squad of around 20 fans has been assembled for what should be a very entertaining match, including our vice-chairman Richard Johnson! There is a training session with the fans on Tuesday 30th July at 7pm on the College astro turf which is open to anyone who hasn't yet signed up to play.
For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Football coaching with Bridgwater CollegeWe and Bridgwater College will be running two football fun days on Thursday 15th and Friday 16th August, at just £25 for both days. Hosted by the college, participants will also receive a tour of Fairfax Park, tickets to a match, trophies, a quiz and a free tuck shop lunch.
Training will start at 10am and run trough until 3pm. Participants will be coached by fully qualified FA coaches.
To book a place now, visit http://store.bridgwater.ac.uk/browse/extra_info.asp?compid=1&modid=1&catid=24&prodvarid=111
U18 TEAM MANAGER REQUIRED
Due to his recent promotion at work last season's Under-18 team manager, Sam Reilly is unable to continue in the role for the coming season. The club is therefore looking for a replacement. Anyone interested please contact club Chairman, Pat Parker at email@example.com or General Secretary Edwina Stone at firstname.lastname@example.org asap.
The Club would like to take this opportunity to congratulate Sam on his promotion and thank him for his efforts with the U18's over the past eighteen months - a difficult job at any time but made much worst by the horrendous weather we experienced last season.
Press Release - Funding helps Bridgwater Town Football Club ' Grow the Game'...
Today (Fri 5 Jul) saw the release of the draws for the first couple of rounds of the season 2013-14 FA Cup competitions.
In The FA Cup with Budweiser, Town have been drawn away against local rivals Taunton in the Preliminary Round on Saturday 31 August with £1925 prize money at stake for the winners and a home tie against either Hengrove Athletic, Bridport or Merthyr Town in the First Round Qualifying two weeks later (£3000 prize money for the winners of that game).
Its away against Chalfont St Peter in the Preliminary Round of The FA Carlsberg Trophy on Saturday 5 October for Town (£2500 prize money) with an away tie versus Weymouth awaiting the winners (£2700 prize money) 14 days later.
‘Town’s’ U18 team have a bye in the Preliminary Round of The FA Youth Cup and will entertain Yate Town U18’s at Fairfax Park in the First Round Qualifying (no prize money in this competition) in week beginning Monday 23 September - which will mean rearranging their U18 League Cup game away at Gillingham Town scheduled for that week - the first rearrangement of the season already…!!!
Meanwhile… also released today was the draw for the Red Insure Cup and Town have been drawn at home in the First Round against Truro City on Tuesday 15 October.
The draw of the First Round of the 2013-14 Somerset FA Premier Cup will be made on 15th July at the Cups Committee meeting.
This year for the first time Somerset FA will be making the draw live on the internet, allowing clubs to watch. The draw will take place from 19:15 on the 15th July.
All you need to watch the draw is broadband access, there will be no cost involved for watching the draw.
Another training session for the squad last night (Thu 4 Jul) and manager Richard Fey and assistant Geraint Bater worked the First Team players a little harder than on Tuesday evening.
All went well and the management duo are very pleased at the early progress and potential being shown by all the players, new and old.
A few more new faces were on display on the night and the majority of those who have been at the two first team sessions this week have now signed Southern League forms.
New goalkeeper, Sam Alexander put pen to paper last night as did Richard’s latest recruit, Sacha Tong, who joins from Cadbury Heath where he was top goalscorer during the last campaign.
And more good news for Town fans is the return to Fairfax Park of two of last season’s favourites, Chris McGrath and Jon Vance after their brief sojourn at Tiverton Town.
Full list of players who have signed Southern League registration forms so far: Sam Alexander, Geraint Bater, Lloyd Beech, Jacob Bennett, Joe Bushin, Ollie Chamberlain, Nuno Felix (from Winterbourne United), Richard Fey, Tyne Govier, Dean Griffiths, Chris McGrath, Graham Mercieca, Bradley Middleton, Kristian Miller, Daine O'Connor (Bitton), Mitchell Page, James Pilling (Bitton), Sacha Tong, Jon Vance, Craig Veal, Phil Veal & Andy Venning.
There are just a couple yet to sign who are away on holiday at present - but they will soon be back and raring to go.
FIRST TEAM BACK IN HARNESS...
Last night (Tue 2 Jul) saw the first team back in training and more than twenty players, including the majority of the new signings, were put through their paces by manager Richard Fey and his assistant Geraint Bater.
Another new face at Fairfax Park put pen to paper last night and signed first team forms - former Willand Rovers utility player Lloyd Beech.
Lloyd (25 in a couple of weeks) has also played for Devon side Cullompton Rangers before joining Willand a couple of seasons ago and can play in most out-field positions. He’s a powerful player who is at home with the ball on the ground or in the air and will prove a useful addition to the squad.
Welcome to Fairfax Park, Lloyd…!!!
Meanwhile…. Steve Laker’s Reserve Team continued their preparations for the coming season (now in their third week) with another good session attended by around 20 players.
With Clevedon United failing their ground grading inspection, Steve’s team have been handed a reprieve from relegation by the Somerset County League so will again be competing in the Premier Division in the coming season - subject to Clevedon United’s right to appeal the decision.
The following Admission Prices have been set for the 2013-14 season...
PLEASE NOTE; 'Seniors' refers to MEN and WOMEN aged 60 & over, while 'Juniors' refers to children aged 16 & under.
SEASON TICKET PRICES
- Adult: £125.00
- Seniors: £95.00
VIP TICKET £125.00 (includes prize draw entry with a top prize of £1,000 Cash)
MATCH ADMISSION PRICES
FIRST TEAM - Calor (Southern) League
- Adult: £8.00
- Seniors: £6.00
- Juniors: FREE
RESERVE TEAM - Somerset County League
- Adult: £4.00
- Seniors: £3.00
- Juniors: FREE
UNDER-18 TEAM - Somerset Floodlight Youth League
- Adult (anyone aged 17 & over TBA
- Juniors: FREE
Please note that for ALL CUP GAMES normal league admission charges apply appropriate to the team competing - unless stated otherwise at the discretion of the Club.
Bridgwater Town FC squad pre-season schedule
(As at 30-06-2013 - E&OE) - change of game on 30 July
Sat 20 July - Willand Rovers - Away - 3pm
Weds 24 July - CHELTENHAM TOWN - HOME - 7.30pm
Sat 27 July - BTFC/WICKES XI v BRISTOL CITY XI - HOME - 3pm (Charity match)
Sat 27 July - Longwell Green - Away - 3pm
Tues 30 July - Wells City - Away - 7.30pm
Thu 01 Aug - WHITMAN COLLEGE (USA) - HOME - 7.30pm
Sat 03 Aug - WEYMOUTH - HOME - 3pm
Sun 04 Aug - FANS XI v PLAYERS XI - HOME - 3pm (Charity match)
Mon 05 Aug - STREET XI - (Reserve team) - Venue & Time to be confirmed
Wed 07 Aug - BATH CITY - HOME - 7.45pm
Sat 10 Aug - Afan Lido (Port Talbot) - Away - 3pm (There will be a coach for approx 25-30 supporters going to the game and bookings will be taken at any of the above home games)
Somerset County League (Reserves) begins Saturday 10 August - fixtures expected mid July (a day or so after the Southern League announce theirs)
Southern League (First) begins on Saturday 17 August - fixtrues expected to be released at 9am on Wednesday 17th July.
On Tuesday night ((25 Jun) there was another training session for the reserve team and manager, Steve Laker stepped up the intensity another notch. But the lads coped well (all 20 of them) with more and more turning up to try out for the Town squad.
Steve is really happy with the progress being made and even new first team manager, Richard Fey and his assistant Geraint Bater came along to watch a section of the training session.
As usual, the squad ended the evening with the jog back to Fairfax Park… but Steve wasn't finished there. He sat the players down and discussed the other side of football, nutrition and dieting!
After a long discussion the training was over..... until tonight (27 Jun) where Steve has arranged a real ‘treat’ for the lads. He is taking them on a trip to the seaside and a session on Brean sands (bucket and spade is an optional extra) before they tackle the infamous Brean Down steps....! Best of luck lads…!!!
Full training for all teams begins next Tuesday (2 July) at Fairfax Park with a 7pm start.
NO PAIN NO GAIN FOR THE RESERVES…
Last night (Tues 18) saw Reserve Team manager, Steve Laker put his players through their paces at Eastover Park - after the obligatory warm up run from Fairfax Park - as their pre-season preparations continue.
The training session went extremely well and everyone put a real effort in.
Special mention goes to the six new lads who turned up. Despite the intensity of the session, they all played their part and didn’t hide when the going got tough (apologies for the cliché). Well done lads… see you all again on Thursday night…!!!
Anyone interested in joining Steve and the lads - training is planned for Tuesdays and Thursdays during the next couple of weeks (7pm at Fairfax Park) until full training for all teams start on Tuesday 2nd July - also 7pm start.
Steve can be contacted on 07595 946070 or email email@example.com
TOWN BAG STRIKER NUMBER FOUR...
Town's new manager, Richard Fey continues building his team for the coming season and today announced another "massive" signing for the club.
Mitchell Page (pictured), age 25, has turned down approaches from other clubs to commit to The Robins for the 2013-14 season after playing for divisional rivals Yate Town during the last campaign.
Mitchell has also played for Clevedon Town and Mangotsfield United where he was a consistent goalscorer, and he bagged a dozen goals for The Bluebells (Yate) last season.
Town now boast four quality strikers in their squad - Joe Bushin, Dean Griffiths, Mitchell Page and Dave Pearse - after losing the services of last season's top goalscorer Ross MacNab to Clevedon Town.
New Sponsor for Southern League
The Southern League has announced new title sponsors for the 2013/14 season in CALOR, whose headquarters are in Warwick.
Calor have over seventy-seven years` experience providing heating, cooking and energy solutions to the heating, catering, agriculture and transport industries.
They currently sponsor the home shirts of Conference Premier outfit Woking.
Calor will replace Evo-Stik as title sponsors from next month after the league acceded to a request from Bostik Ltd to terminate their sponsorship a year early.
The league will be known as the Calor League.
It was also confirmed at the league’s AGM that member clubs will now have the option to opt out of competing in the (Red Insure) League Cup competition.
NO SUCH THING AS A HOLIDAY…
Even while he is supposed to be away on holiday with his family, Town’s new manager, Richard Fey continues with his preseason preparations.
Today he announced a further home friendly for the First Team which will see Blue Square South side BATH CITY visiting Fairfax Park on Wednesday 7th August with a 7.45pm kick off.
Richard has also been busy completing his backroom staff and has managed to recruit Stacey Endacott as the club’s new physiotherapist replacing Dave Lukins who has joined divisional rivals Clevedon Town.
Stacey was with local rivals Taunton Town last season and has also wielded the magic sponge at Tiverton Town and Willand Rovers.
Welcome aboard Stacey…
Meanwhile… Tonight (13 June) the Reserve Team, managed by Steve Laker, returned to training after a break of just 40 days since their last Somerset County League game of the 2012-13 season.
Even after such a short break there was a good turn out of old faces and new, and around 20 eager souls were made to run from Fairfax Park to Eastover Park (that was the warm up) where a fairly productive training session took place - the run back was the warm down…although Steve and his assistant Nick Slocombe drove both ways!!!
Anyone interested in joining in with Steve and the lads - training is planned for Tuesdays and Thursdays during the next couple of weeks (7pm at Fairfax Park) until full training for all teams start on Tuesday 2nd July - also 7pm start.
Steve can be contacted on 07595 946070 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Bridgwater Town FC squad pre-season schedule
(As at 13-06-2013 - E&OE)
Sat 20 July - Willand Rovers - Away - 3pm
Weds 24 July - CHELTENHAM TOWN - HOME - 7.30pm
Sat 27 July - BTFC/WICKES XI v BRISTOL CITY XI - HOME - 3pm (Charity match)
Sat 27 July - Longwell Green - Away - 3pm
Tues 30 July - Hallen - Away - 7.30pm
Thu 01 Aug - WHITMAN COLLEGE (USA) - HOME - 7.30pm
Sat 03 Aug - WEYMOUTH - HOME - 3pm
Mon 05 Aug - STREET XI - HOME - 7.30pm (Reserve team)
Wed 07 Aug - BATH CITY - HOME - 7.45pm
Sat 10 Aug - Afan Lido (Port Talbot) - Away - 3pm (There will be a coach for approx 25-30 supporters going to the game and bookings will be taken at any of the above home games)
Somerset County League (Reserves) begins Saturday 10 August - fixtures expected mid July (a day or so after the Southern League announce theirs)
Southern League (First) begins on Saturday 17 August - fixtrues expected mid July
MORE NEW RECRUITS ANNOUNCED...
Town manager, Richard Fey announced earlier today the names of three new faces that Robins fans can expect to see over the coming weeks.
Firstly, highly-rated goalkeeper Sam Alexander has agreed to join from Toolstation League side Bitton. 22-year-old Sam is a former Bristol Rovers trainee who has also played for Clevedon Town and Weston-super-Mare.
Also, two new midfielders have committed to the Robins for the coming campaign - Aaron Wilson, age 26, ex Chippenham Town, Gloucester City, Taunton Town & Weston-super-Mare, and Kristian Miller, age 22, former Cinderford Town, Frome Town and last season Paulton Rovers.
We welcome all three to the club.
NEW STRIKER JOINS THE ROBINS...
Town's new manager, Richard Fey has just announced his latest recruit, 28-year-old Dean Griffiths (pictured inset) who joins from Chippenham Town.
Dean, a striker who can also play on the wing, made 34 appearances for the Evo Stik League Southern Premier Division side last season (2012-13) scoring 13 goals (including 6 in the last 8 games), and his former clubs include: Bitton, Frome Town, Mangotsfield Utd, Tiverton Town & Yate Towm.
Welcome aboard Dean...
Jacob Bennett, Ollie Chamberlain, Kenzie Farnham, Tyne Govier, Graham Mercieca, Bradley Middleton, Dave Pearce, Zayne Simpson & Andy Venning have all agreed to return to the club next season. However, on the minus side, Ross MacNab has opted to join Clevedon Town along with club Physio, Dave Lukins - we wish them both well - and Luke Purnell has, unfortunately, accepted an offer to join Weston-super-Mare FC two steps up the pyramid. We thank Luke for his service to the club during a very difficult season and a quarter in our recent history, but the standard was too good an offer for him to turn down.
Cheltenham Town to play at Fairfax Park.
The first game to be staged at Fairfax Park in the build up to the start of the new Southern League season - which starts on Saturday 17 August - will see the First Team play npower League Two side Cheltenham Town on Wednesday 24 July with a 7.30pm kick off.
Town’s new manager, Richard Fey has to date arranged five pre-season games for the First Team and their programme starts with the short away trip to Devon to play Willand Rovers at Silver Street on Saturday 20 July - kick off 3pm.
The following Saturday (27 July), while Fairfax Park plays host to a charity game in aid of Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research where a Bridgwater Town/Bridgwater Wickes Invitation XI take on a Bristol City (Scott Murray) XI (3pm kick off), Town’s First Team play away at Longwell Green (also 3pm kick off).
Hallen away is the next game currently on the schedule on Tuesday 30 July (7.30pm), while a game against Weymouth at Fairfax Park on Saturday 03 August (3pm) is the last on the list so far - with a couple more games to be added (hopefully) during week ending Saturday 10 August - however, finding suitable opponents for August 10 is proving difficult due to so many league starting that weekend - keep 'hitting' on this site for further updates.
The pre-season schedule for Town’s Reserves - managed by Steve Laker - is in its early stages and isn’t being helped by the continuing uncertainty regarding the promotion/relegation situation in the Somerset County League. More information on both subjects to follow when details are known…
First Team Friendlies - as at 04-06-2013
Sat 20 July - Willand Rovers Away 3pm
Weds 24 July - Cheltenham Town Home 7.30pm
Sat 27 July - Longwell Green Away 3pm
Tues 30 July - Hallen Away 7.30pm
Sat 03 Aug - Weymouth Home 3pm
Tue 06 Aug - TBA
Sat 10 Aug - TBA
CALLING ALL FANS... Don't forget Wednesday evening....
Bridgwater Town are delighted to announce the first, exciting signing for the new season. Former Dawlish, Tiverton and Paulton Rovers top scorer Joe Bushin has put pen to paper with us this year.
BRIDGWATER TOWN FOOTBALL CLUB
COMMERCIAL MANAGER WANTED
For further details please contact
After his 'meet the manager' appearance at Fairfax Park yesterday afternoon (19 May), Town’s new manager Richard Fey has wasted no time in getting to work and today he confirmed his assistant manager for the coming season will be Geraint Bater.
A former player with Newport County, Bristol Rovers, Clevedon Town, Mangotsfield United and Yate Town (where he was captain last season), Bater will also act as a player alongside his management role.
Fey has also been on the phone arranging pre-season games and three are confirmed so far - Shepton Mallet (away), Weymouth (home) and Willand Rovers (away). Full details of these - and other - games will appear in due course.
Bridgwater Town, Main sponsor Richard Johnson (left) with manager Richard Fey.
New Manager Richard Fey
Bridgwater Town Football Club are pleased to announce that after several days of interviews, and from a very strong list of applicants, Richard Fey has been appointed as First Team Manager for the forthcoming season.
Richard is a family man who lives in Bristol but works in Bridgwater, and he impressed the club’s committee with his professional attitude and his knowledge of football in this area at several levels.
This season, Richard has been assistant manager to Nathan Rudge at Chippenham Town in the Southern League Premier Division but he was previously manager at Toolstation Western League side Bitton for two and a half successful seasons.
Starting his playing career as a trainee with Bristol Rovers, Richard has played at several clubs in the area including Bristol Manor Farm, Clevedon Town, Frome Town and Mangotsfield United and has also been player/manager at Cadbury Heath.
Better late than never.... Season 2012-13 Awards....
Interim statement from Club Chairman, Pat Parker (10 Apr):
"It is with regret that the club has decided to part company with First Team manager Kevin Milsom. He has served the club over many years very well. Unfortunately, at this point of time he has apparently run out of ideas to take the club forward. The decision of the club’s committee was unanimous and it was felt it was time to move on."
A full statement will be released in due course.
Somerset Premier Cup Final
Paulton Rovers 3, Bridgwater Town 1
A new name has been added to the Somerset FA Premier Cup Trophy after tonight’s encounter at The Hand Stadium in Clevedon as Paulton Rovers put in a solid second half performance to win 3-1.
The first half an hour was an even affair with nothing between the sides, but it was Bridgwater who broke the deadlock on 33 minutes as a corner from the right caused confusion in the Paulton penalty area.
There was a suspicion that the ball had already crossed the line in the resulting goalmouth scramble as it appeared to be punched clear by a Paulton defender. Several players went for the loose ball and Tim Legg (pictured) got the all important touch to force the ball into the net to give Town the lead.
Paulton hit back on the stroke of half time when Marcus Mapstone was on hand to score following another goalmouth scramble in the Town penalty area, and they took the lead six minutes into the second period when former Town player, Nick McCootie found the net from 20 yards shooting home through a sea of legs with Town keeper Luke Purnell unsighted.
Paulton then spurned a chance to go 3-1 up when a harshly awarded penalty was superbly saved by man-of-he-match Purnell just after the hour mark, but with Town pushing forward for an equaliser, Paulton eventually made the game safe after 83 minutes when Scott Brice headed home a well-placed free kick from the right.
Milsom Still Undecided Over Future
Regardless of outcome of tonight's result in the Somerset Premier Cup final at Clevedon Town, Bridgwater Town's manager Kevin Milsom will be reconsidering his future with the Evo-Stik League Southern Division One South & West club.
Bridgwater play league rivals Paulton Rovers following what has been described as "a horrendous season" by Milsom.
"It has been a privilege to have been given the opportunity to manage Bridgwater," said Milsom.
"But the club needs to be restructured in every shape and form. And at the end of the day I don't know whether I want to take this on.
"Some people blame me for practically everything which has gone on. They haven't a clue how difficult it has been for the players and myself.
"Reaching the final, however, has been a bonus for us. The lads can go out there and express themselves and enjoy it."
Bridgwater endured an amazing thirty-one postponed games this season, most of them due to the appalling bad weather.
"We have had a week to get over our last game and we're not use to that," added Milsom, who began the season being joint manager with Dave Pople who has since quit his role at the club.
Bridgwater beat Taunton Town 3-2 in the semi-finals at Fairfax Park a week ago - the winner coming courtesy of an own goal in the 90th minute.
Harry Nodwell, who missed the tie against Taunton with a hamstring injury, is included in Bridgwater's squad tonight.
I think last night (Tuesday) we all witnessed what can be achieved when you apply yourself for ninety minutes. What a great result and no more than the lads deserve for all there hard work in the last few weeks.
Now we've something to look forward to... a game we can go into with every confidence knowing that we can go into any one-off game and we can get a result.
Look forward to seeing you all at Clevedon next Tuesday when in typical Bridgwater style you will get behind us and cheer us on to a memorable win, hopefully. I will be able to start the first team and not baby faces and when we win get a taxi back to Weston.
Until next time... enjoy your football... Millie.
Please be advised of the details of this year's Premier Cup final
Paulton Rovers v Bridgwater Town
Tuesday 7th May 2013, at The Hand Stadium, Clevedon Town FC.
Kick off 7:30pm (or it could be 7:45pm as conflicting information has been sent by Somerset FA)
Admission: Adults £7, Concessions £5, Under 16 £2
Well we have done it, finish all of our league games by the 27th which was what we had to do despite having 32 cancellation this season. A programme that showed no respect or any common sense at all. To ask players to play 14 games in 27 days is just simply a joke. To ask players who all have full time jobs and family's to play the games and do the miles is just simply ridiculous. Maybe some what easier when you are sat behind a desk and not understanding the commitment that has to be put in to play at southern league level.
It's all been very disappointing this season especially when it all looked so promising at an early stage. But we have got there and I, the club and supporters owe the players that stayed a massive diet of gratitude for fulfilling the fixture. I have, in all my time, never seen so many players running on empty in so many games but they gave there all to achieve that.
Tuesday sees us play local rivals Taunton in the semi final of the Somerset Premier Cup - a local derby in which we haven't been committed enough in the last two meetings and things need to change to get the right result - will there be a twist in the tail that sees us win and go on to a final? Lets hope so because I really think the lads deserve it for all they have put in this season.
As for me, at this moment in time I feel absolutely mentally drained and want to get Tuesday nights game over and done with before taking a step back and making the right decision, not for Kev Milsom but for Bridgwater Town, and if I think that it's best for all concerned that I move on then so be it because no one person is bigger than the club.
I have done my best for the club in the time I've served them, It has not always been easy - Itâ��s all about finance, which we don't have so we are where we are at. No finance = no quality players, so we either have to be patient and bring some youngsters through or set our expectation lower, get behind the club and players and be positive.
While I know wining in a Bridgwater shirt means everything to us all sometimes you might have to take a step backwards to move forward. A tough decision but one that might prove right further down the line.
Letâ��s hope we get the right result Tuesday night. Make lots of noise cheering the lads on which they all really appreciate as do I and we can see you all at Clevedon in the final against Paulton.
Thank you for all you support this season and in the time I have been here.
Enjoy your football until next time Millie
Martyrs too strong for Town
With both sides playing their second game of the weeekend, Town's Sunday trip to Wales ended in disappointment as home side Merthyr Town ran out comfortable winners after they hit two goals in each half to win 4-0.
Matt Harris opened the scoring for the Martyrs after 8 minutes and Garry Shepperd doubled their lead just before half-time. Town battled well in the second period without reward and were finally killed off by two goals in the final fifteen minutes from Simon Long (74 mins) and Ian Traylor (80).
The win moved Merthyr up to third place in the table above Swindon Supermarine as the two teams battle it out for home advantage in the end-of-season play-off semi-finals.
Bridgwater Town 1 Cirencester Town 1
Ross MacNab's 13th goal of the season after 4 minutes gave Bridgy the ideal start, but a disputed Cirencester goal from Joe Sheppard just before half-time levelled things up. The second half was fairly even with chances being created at both ends but the finishing touch was lacking.
Match report to follow...
Town go down despite good, battling display...
A 70th minute goal by Ross MacNab (pictured) wasn't enough as home side Cinderford Town had Andy Lewis (with two goals) to thank for their 2-1 win at The Causeway Ground tonight (18 Apr).
After an keenly contested, even first half - which saw good performances from Town's Bradley Middleton, Graham Mercieca and Tyne Govier - Lewis opened the scoring for the hosts midway through the second period. MacNab levelled for Town on 70 minutes only for Lewis to grab what proved the winner six minutes later.
More details to follow...
FROME TOWN LADIES 2, BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 0
With their small squad again depleted by unavailability and injuries, Town still had high hopes of getting a result that would move them away from the relegation area. Unfortunately this was not to be. With players playing out of position, Town found it hard to get going and the first half was fairly even, with neither side creating many chances. Georgia Coles went close for Town but that was about as good as it got.
The second half started much the same, but after 55 minutes Town went behind when a through ball was turned past Town keeper Faye Edwards. Town huffed and puffed but couldn't get back on terms and in the 70th minute a harsh penalty was awarded against Town defender Jess Chappell for handball - the ball was smashed at her from point blank range and the referee deemed this deliberate. Town protested but to no avail and the penalty was converted which effectively sealed the match for Frome. Town tried hard to get back into the match but Frome saw out time fairly comfortably.
The Ladies are away at second in the table Larkhall Athletic on Thursday night (16 Apr) and next Sunday have an important clash at home against Cleeve West Town. Kick off is at 2pm at Fairfax Park and any support would be gladly appreciated in their efforts to climb away from the lower end of the league table.
Plymstock United Ladies 1 BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 2
With injuries and non availability depleting Town's side they travelled to Plymstock with the bare eleven. On a bone hard pitch and with a stiff breeze blowing down the slope this was never going to be a game for the purists.
Town played up the slope against the wind in the first half and the exchanges were fairly even as both side had trouble controlling the ball. After 10 minutes however, Town were caught square at the back which allowed a Plymstock forward to run on and slip the ball past Faye Edwards in the Town goal. This proved to be their only shot on target.
Town then started to get a grip in the match and created a few half chances before they drew level in the 25 minute. A cross from the right found Emily Hale arriving late, and she hit the ball high into the net from a difficult angle at the back post.
The Ladies were now on top, but they received another setback after 35 minutes when midfielder Hannah Brown was caught on the right knee by a reckless tackle which resulted in her being taken to hospital by ambulance with what looked like a serious knee injury. The Plymstock player who made the tackle received a straight red card.
After a 30 minute delay the match restarted with ten a side as Town had no substitute, but they continue to dominate without finding the killer touch. However, as the first half drew to a close Town were unlucky when they had the ball in the net only to see the goal struck off for an alleged handball.
In the second half, playing with the wind behind them, Town were well on top but still couldn’t find the second goal. Georgia Coles first hit the bar and then the post, but it wasn't until the 70th minute that they eventually went ahead.
Anusia Rourke latched on to a through pass and, with two defenders closing her down and the keeper coming out, she managed to bundled the ball over the line. Plymstock rarely threatened after that, and the match continued to the end with Town in the ascendancy.
This was an excellent 3 points in this relegation battle in the Premier Division. Next week the Ladies travel to Frome Town for another foot of the table battle.
BRIDGWATER TOWN FOOTBALL CLUB
COMMERCIAL MANAGER WANTED
For further details please contact
As an update - and to place on record our sincere thanks - the Club would like to acknowledge receipt of almost £400.00 in memory of the late FRANK BARTLETT which came from the proceeds of the collection held at his funeral service at St Mary's Church recently.
It was such a wonderful gesture of Frank's family to agree to donate the money to the Club as they felt that is what Frank would have wanted.
The total amount received was £393.90, which included £50.00 from Frank's family themselves and £25.10 collected at the Monday Lunch Club at the Sydenham Community Centre in Parkway - many thanks to them for organising that and for their generosity.
After many changes of plan - which were brought about by so many of our home games being postponed over the past few months because of the wet weather - the draw for the 2012-13 VIP Season Ticket Competition (run by the BTFC Supporters' Club) was finally completed at the match versus Sholing on Saturday (30 March).
The draw took place on the pitch at half-time and was witnessed by the crowd. The winning tickets were independently drawn by David Brammer of the Somerset Referees Association and the lucky recipients of the fantastic prizes are...
The First Prize of £1,000 went to Mr. Willie Rich. The Second Prize of £500 is wending its way to Mr. David Kirk, while the third Prize of £250 went to Trelleborg Ltd (Mr. Matt Lazenby). And finally... the fourth Prize of a Match Sponsorship Package for 10 people was won by Mr. Barry Slocombe.
Remember folks... "You had to be in it to win it...!!!"
In fact, everyone who entered is really a winner as all entrants received a season ticket which saves up to £111 on the price of adult admission to all Bridgwater Town FC First Team and Reserve Team Home League games during the season - and all for the price of a normal adult season ticket.
MANY THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO SUPPORTED THE DRAW, and thanks for your understanding over the delay to the draw - we cannot beat the weather you know...!!!
THE POWER OF TV ADVERTISING...
No doubt due to our Chairman, Pat Parker's appearance on BBC Points West recently, for the following seven day period - 25th to 31st March - our website had a record....
A goal midway through the second half by Kyran Devitt, which opened his account with Town Reserves, earned his side a crucial 1-0 win against Cutters Friday at Fairfax Park today as they battle against the drop from the Somerset County League Premier Division.
After latching onto a through pass by Jacob Bennett, Devitt controlled the ball well to wrong foot his marker and finished with aplomb from just inside the Cutters' penalty area to beat the keeper low to his right.
The goal was no more than the team deserved as they all put in a superb battling performance against a physical Bristol outfit who had beaten them 2-1 at the Cutters Club on the opening day of the season.
Special mention must go to young Harry Horton who ran his socks off and battled hard for everything for the whole ninety minutes.
Reserves get recognition for showing ‘Respect’…
Despite their 4-1 defeat against fellow relegation candidates Stockwood Green this afternoon, there was some good news for Town’s Reserve Team as they received recognition for their conduct and sportsmanship both on and off the field during the middle third of the season.
Before the game at Hursley Lane, Somerset County League chairman, Roy Penny presented team manager, Steve Laker (see picture) with the award and a £50 cheque for the club as part of the league’s ‘Respect’ programme which rates teams on various aspects of their performance both on and off the field of play during league and cup games.
Well done to Steve and his ‘lads’ - keep up the good work…
A Dave Pearse penalty put Town 1-0 up inside the last ten minutes of the game at Bishops Cleeve, but the home side equalised with seconds remaining on the clock to make the final score 1-all.
Town: Luke Purnell, Steve Fitzpatrick, Zayne Simpson, Jacob Bennett, Phil Veal, Ollie Chamberlain, Darryl Cazley, Kye Mountford, Ross macNab, Dave Pearse, Harry Nodwell - Subs: Ricky Bennett, Luke Turner, Lee Villis, Mike Duffy
Unfortunately, despite our desperate fixture situation, and all our hopes, our pitch has been deemed simply too dangerous to play on tonight so the scheduled game against Taunton Town has been postponed.
The possibility of switching the game to Taunton has been explored, but there were too many obsticles in the way for that to happen. We have also looked into playing the game tomorrow, but, again, that is a non-starter.
Many apologies for any inconvenience that the late postponement may have caused. It has come as yet another big blow to the club in what has become a nightmare season at Fairfax Park.
It's now 30 First Team games rearranged for the season... Overnight snow at Merthyr has caused the latest postponement in this crazy, crazy season.
The weather has decimated the Southern League programme again today, with only three Premier Division games surviving - at Bideford, St Neots & Weymouth.
Let's hope that Monday's scheduled home game against Taunton Town (7.45pm) doesn't become number 31...!!!
The weather is still playing havoc with our fixtures as tonight's scheduled away game at Sholing is called off due to waterlogged areas of the VT Sports Ground pitch. This is the fifth time the game has been postponed - although it's the first time the weather is to blame (cup game for the rest). A new date will be sorted out asap.
The next outing for Town's First Team is on WEDNESDAY THIS WEEK (20 Mar) when they travel to Mangotsfiled United for the rearranged fixture after the game at Cossham Street was postponed ten minutes before kick off last Monday due to a frozen pitch. Wednesday's match kicks off at 7.45pm - weather permitting...!!! This is followed by a trip to Merthyr Town on Saturday (23 Mar) with a 3pm kick off.
Meanwhile... the Reserve Team have had a couple of games changed with this coming Saturday's home match against Weston St Johns being moved to Monday 8th April as the latest. Town Reserves have up to twelve players unavailable due to County U18 and England Schools & Colleges games over the weekend.
The Reserve Team's home game against Clevedon United postponed last Monday has been rearranged for Thursday 28 March - 7.45pm.
Thanks to twelve hours of steady rain, the pitch at Fairfax Park has flooded again so today's home game versus Evesham United has been postponed.
The new date is Thursday 25th April - 7.45pm.
A 36th minute goal by Ross MacNab (pictured) wasn't enough to prevent the First Team's third league defeat of the week as they went down 2-1 to play-off contenders Yate Town at Lodge Road this afternoon.
Meanwhile... also on the road, the Reserve Team suffered their second league defeat in four days at the hands of the same opponents when they lost 3-0 at Nailsea Town this afternoon.
Tonight's home game against Shortwood United will be the 300th Southern League game to be played by ‘Bridgwater Town’ - 230 by the current club since joining the league in 2007 and 70 by our predecessors in seasons 1982-83 & 1983-84.
How many of you can remember who were the first opponents…? Not that many I imaging…! Frank Bartlett would have remembered…!!!
It was Dudley Town - where are they now? - West Midlands (Regional) League Premier Division - who were the visitors at Castlefields on Saturday 21st August 1982 with Bridgy winning 1-0 thanks to a Trevor Kirk goal.
The crowd that day was 247.
The draw for the Semi-Finals of the Somerset FA Premier Cup has been released and Town have been drawn at home against local rivals Taunton Town who beat Frome Town 5-2 at Wordsworth Drive earlier this evening (27 Feb).
The game is scheduled to be played during week beginning 8th April (probably Tuesday 9th at 7.45pm) and will be the culmination of a 16-day hat-trick of meetings between the two sides - the first match being the rearranged league game at Fairfax Park on Monday 25th March (7.45pm) and the return at Wordsworth Drive on Easter Monday,1st April (kick off to be announced).
The other semi-final will be between Bath City and Paulton Rovers who beat Odd Down and Larkhall Athletic respectively last night.
Two goals in the final 10 minutes saw Bridgwater through to the semi-finals of the Somerset Premier Cup after a narrow 3-2 win at Lake View against hosts, Toolstation League side Bishop Sutton tonight (26 Feb).
Craig Veal opened the scoring for Town in the 12th minute, but Sutton were level through Metters 15 minutes later, then Hailston gave the home side a 2-1 half-time lead with his side's second on 35 minutes.
The home side held out until the 80th minute when Veal was on hand to score his second of the game from close range after the Sutton keeper failed to deal with a cross and five minutes later Graham Mercieca found himself in a similar position to net the winner for Town.
The Semi-finals are due to be played in week beginning 8th April - which means rearranging the home league game against Poole Town scheduled for Tuesday, April 9th.
Hungerford Remain Two Points Clear -
The Evo-Stik League Southern Division One South & West leaders Hungerford Town won 1-0 at Evesham United to remain two points clear at the top. Dean Stow scored the vital goal for the leaders 10 minutes into the second half.
Second-placed Poole Town also secured a 1-0 home victory over Mangotsfield United, thanks to a 13th minute Michael Charles effort.
Third-placed Merthyr Town had to settle for a point from a 2-2 draw at Sholing, taking a first-minute lead through Ryan Prosser and then falling 2-1 behind to goals from Mike Carter on 18 minutes and Barry Mason 2 minutes after half-time before Prosser scored his second to earn parity on 69 minutes.
Fourth-placed Swindon Supermarine kept up their challenge with a 3-1 victory at second-from-bottom Winchester City. And they had to come back from being a 7th minute goal down to win, courtesy of Chris Taylor after 28 minutes, Josh Parsons on 39 and Ashley Edenborough 20 minutes from time.
Yate Town confirmed their play-off credentials with a 3-0 home win over fifth-placed Paulton Rovers. Lee Rendall after 19 minutes, Scott Wilson on 38 minutes and Michael Meaker 16 minutes from time were the home scorers.
Cirencester Town took the lead 20 minutes from time through Sam Collier, conceded a Joe Bushin equaliser 6 minutes from the end but secured a 2-1 win at Tiverton Town when Sam Packer scored with just 2 minutes remaining at the Corinium Stadium.
Shortwood United’s Ash Thomas scored 7 minutes from the end to secure a 1-0 home win over Didcot Town, while North Leigh recorded a 2-0 home victory over Wimborne Town, thanks to goals from Declan Shepherd and Kieran Sanders in the final 13 minutes.
Taunton Town were held 1-1 at home by Abingdon United, whose Aaron Woodley gave them a 50th minute lead that Jamie Short cancelled out 9 minutes from time.
Bishops Cleeve moved to within a point of safety when a goal from Gloucester City loanee Matt Liddiard 4 minutes into the second half gave them a vital 1-0 home win against Clevedon Town.
Cinderford Town's home match with Bridgwater Town was postponed owing to a frozen pitch.
Unfortunately, after a 10am pitch inspection, the First Team game at Cinderford Town was postponed due to a frozen pitch. A new date will be set in due course.
Meanwhile, the Reserve Team were away at Watchet Town, and despite early worries of the game being postponed due to overnight snow, a Kenzie Farnham penalty proved enough to win the three points and complete the league double over their hosts.
After much discussion... THURSDAY 7th MARCH (7.45pm kick off) is the new date agreed between the two teams for the re-scheduled home game against Shortwood United which was postponed last Saturday (16 Feb).
It isn't an ideal situation as it now gives the First Team three home games in just six days and follows Tiverton Town on Satuday 2nd March and North Leigh on Tuesday 5th March.
There is also a Reserve Team home game against Nailsea Town on Wednesday 6th March - so a busy time that week for the volunteers staffing the tea hut and bar at Fairfax Park.
Full list of remaining First Team fixture below...
With the better weather continuing, Town's Ladies team will be hopeful that nothing will get in the way of their scheduled game against Bristol Ladies Union at Fairfax Park on Sunday (24 Feb) - kick off 2pm, admission free - so they can get back to league action after the lengthy weather-enforced winter break. It is in fact eighteen weeks since they last played a league game, with the 2-1 defeat at Weymouth way back on Sunday 21st October being their last outing.
They have played three County Cup game in that time, however, and in some ways these games have added to the problem of their league games piling up. A cup game gets called off one weekend and is automatically put back to the following weekend. Then it is called off again and put back a further week - in each case replacing a scheduled league game.
This happened in each of the rounds of this season's County Cup and the Ladies only ended up playing their quarter-final tie against Nailsea United Ladies by switching venue and playing away. But giving up home advantage didn't hamper the team as they progressed to the Final with a narrow 2-1 win.
In the Final they will meet Brislington Ladies from the Somerset County Women's League Division One (two division below Town), but the date and venue for the game have yet to be announced. Brislington beat a depleted Yeovil Town Ladies Reserve side 3-0 in the other semi-final with the south Somerset side only fielding ten players for the game.
After six weeks inactivity, the First Team finally got a game under their belt as they battled out a goalless draw at Fairfax Park against Wimborne Town. In truth the game wasn't a classic and several of the Bridgy players took a while to get the rustiness out of their legs.
Thanks go to Les Bellew for sponsoring the Match & Match Ball, while John Marchant Electrical Services sponsored the match Programme. Les also donated a bottle of something or other for the Bridgy Man of the Match - and his choice was Joe McClennan (pictured).
There is no action at Fairfax Park on Saturday as both our senior sides are away from home - the First Team travel to Cinderford Town, while the Reserves make the short trip to west Somerset to visit local rivals Watchet Town.
Next action at Fairfac Park is on MONDAY night (7.45pm kick off) when the Reserve take on their Street counterparts in the Somerset County League Premier Division - the game has been brought forward 24 hours from Tuesday due to a County U18 game that night where the Reserves have up to six registered players selected in the Somerset FA squad.
FINGERS CROSSED EVERYONE...
The recent dry spell is finally having an effect on the pitch at Fairfax Park which is drying out nicely and the club are very confident that tomorrow's home game against Wimborne Town will be ON.
Hopefully, the weather forecast is correct and no rain will fall in the next 24 hours to put a spanner in the works and we look forward to our first footballing action in over a month - see map above if you've forgotten where the ground is...!!!
On the lighter side... for those who believe in such things as heaven and so on... we think that Frank Bartlett has got something to do with it. As you know, sadly, Frank passed away a week or so ago - his funeral service is at 1.45pm tomorrow at St Mary's Church.
Upon his arrival in Heaven Frank immediately made an appointment to see God. He had to wait a few days as The Almighty is a busy person, but at the appointed time Frank put forward a strong case for God to stop the rain falling in Bridgwater to give us a chance to get games on again...!!!
It seems to have worked... and it's nice to know that someone 'up there' is looking after us - well done Frank - keep up the good work, mate...!!!
Unfortunately, despite the fine weather of the last few days, today's First Team home game against Shortwood United has been postponed.
At an early morning pitch inspection, the south-western corner of the pitch was deemed unplayable as it is still very, very wet and boggy due to the level of the water table underneath the surface in that area.
A new date for the game will be arranged in due course.
Calling all friends of Les Bellew....
He's having a Retirement Party on Saturday night at The Robins Club and you're all invited....!!!
Disco & Karaoke (only £1 to stop Les from singing),
Plenty of food... & a Cake...
and a good time for one and all...
A hat-trick of penalties by Kenzie Farnham (pictured) and a fourth goal from Callum Kennelly gave Town Reserves the points in a seven-goal thriller against promotion chasing Ashton & Backwell United this afternoon.
This was the Reserves' first game in two months - their last game was away at Nailsea United on Dec 8th - and only their third game in sixteen weeks. Thanks again to everyone at Backwell for agreeing to switch the fixture there to allow the game to be played.
Report taken from the Bridgwater Mercury website.
Ashton and Backwell United 3, Bridgwater Town Res 4
A hat-trick of penalties by Kenzie Farnham helped Bridgwater seal a narrow 4-3 win against a physical Ashton and Backwell United side.
Callum Kennelly opened the scoring with a curling free-kick from the edge of the box before the home side levelled shortly after.
Town regained the lead when Farnham slotted home his spot kick after Michael Duffy was brought down but once again the home side equalised to make the scores 2-2 at half-time.
Ashton were reduced to ten men following a straight red card after Jake Bennett was fouled in the box resulting in Farnham's second successful strike from the penalty spot.
The home side scored straight from the kick-off to make it 3-3 but the winner came with six minutes left on the clock as 16-year-old debutant Harry Horton, who had an excellent game, was bundled over and Farnham kept his cool to score the penalty.
The team have no game this weekend.
When are we going to get a break with the weather???
Snow falling on a very wet pitch at The Webbs Wood Stadium has caused the postponement of today's scheduled First Team game away against Swindon Supermarine. The decision was made at 10.30am after a pitch inspection where the pitch was deemwd unplayable.
Meanwhile... it's GOOD NEWS for the Reserve Team as their game at Ashton & Backwell United is ON with a 2.30pm kick off. This will be only the third game in 16 weeks for the Reserves due to the weather and having several free Saturdays (still three more of those before the end of the season). Our thanks to Debbie and the gang at Backwell for agreeing to switch the fixture at short notice so the game could be played.
There is more bad news - possibly - for Town fans...!!! IF we get the heavy rain that is forecast over the next 24-36 hours then Tuesday's local derby game at home against Taunton Town will be very much in doubt due to the continuing serious problem we are experiencing with the south western corner of the pitch... Sorry to be such a pessimist... but....!!!
IT WAS WITH GREAT SADNESS THAT WE LEARNT TODAY OF THE PASSING OF OUR LONGEST SERVING SUPPORTER, FRANK BARTLETT LAST NIGHT.
Frank had been following the 'Town' (and its forerunners) non-stop since 1946 when the origins of the present club were laid with the formation of Crown Dynamo FC in that year.
Frank had been made a life member of the Club at the last AGM in recognition of his years of support and he will be sadly missed by us all at Fairfax Park.
Our condolence goes to his family and friends at this sad time.
The Funeral Service will be at St. Mary's Church on Tuesday 19th February at 1.45pm.
Division One South & West
Cirencester Town conceded a goal in the fourth minute of time added on to lose 1-0 at North Leigh while Evesham United, a goal ahead at the interval, had to settle for a 1-1 home draw when Abingdon United scored midway through the second half. On Wednesday Paulton Rovers moved into the play-off places when a third minute goal gave them a 1-0 victory at bottom of the table Bishops Cleeve while Taunton Town, having taken a fourth minute lead, went behind just after the half hour mark but equalised a minute before the break to secure a 2-2 home draw with Mangotsfield United.
Red Insure Cup Fourth Round
On Tuesday Arlesey Town, who took the lead three minutes before the break, scored five times in the second half to book a place in the Semi Finals with a 6-0 home win over Didcot Town and on Wednesday two more Premier Division sides progressed at the expense of Division One South & West clubs when Frome Town, who twice went behind, scored in the final minute to win 3-2 at home against Sholing while top of the table Leamington, trailing at half time, scored three times after the break to win 3-1 at home against Cinderford Town. The remaining Quarter Final tie between Slough Town and Northwood is scheduled for next Tuesday (12 Feb).
Hemel Hempstead Town moved back to within eight points of the leaders when, having scored twice in the opening seven minutes, they completed a 2-1 victory at Chippenham Town, extending the home side's run without a win to eleven matches, while third in the table Cambridge City returned home from Bashley with a point from a 0-0 draw but fifth placed Barwell, despite scoring in the final minute, went down 2-1 at home to Gosport Borough. AFC Totton, behind eight minutes before the break and again on the stroke of half time, scored three times in the second half to complete a 5-2 home win over Weymouth and St Neots Town, ahead at the break, conceded an equaliser five minutes into the second half but soon after scored twice in five minutes to record a 3-1 home win over Chesham United.
Division One Central
Biggleswade Town took over at the top of the table when they scored sixteen minutes into the second half to win 1-0 at home against Rugby Town, who dropped two places to fourth, and Godalming Town dropped to second when a second half penalty gave Burnham a 1-0 home victory which lifted them into third place while fifth placed Royston Town scored twice in the final ten minutes to secure a 2-0 home win over Thatcham Town to stay just a single point off the summit. Elsewhere, AFC Hayes, ahead from a penalty after the break, conceded an equaliser with just a minute remaining but scored twice in time added on to record a 3-1 home victory over Fleet Town and Barton Rovers, ahead at half time, scored a minute from the end to win 2-1 at home against bottom of the table Woodford United while Aylesbury, two goals behind at the interval, scored twice in the second half to secure a home point from a 2-2 draw with Chalfont St Peter.
Well the weather has beaten us again. The heavy rain that fell overnight coupled with the heavy wintery showers during the day have meant that tonight's scheduled game against Yate Town has been postponed - match rearrangement number 21 of the season...!!!
At a mid day pitch inspection it was a case of the same old story with the south western corner of the pitch being absolutely saturated and unplayable.
Saturday's scheduled Reserve Team home game against Ashton & Backwell United has been switched to be played away (2.30pm kick off) and a new date for the home game has been fixed for Wednesday 3rd April (7.45pm).
Everyone now has their fingers crossed that the weather will improve significantly to allow next Tuesday's rearranged game against Taunton Town to go ahead.
Well at the end of another weekend when we had to call the game off I am beginning to wonder if we will ever play at home again! It's all very frustrate when you prepare for a game and then find yourself having to look in the paper and find an alternative to watch.
On Saturday, having looked and found nothing local, I took myself down to Weston to have a look at what goes on there. Whilst not the greatest of games, I found myself looking around with great envy at everything that they have: pitch, ground, and a sustainable budget which Craig (Laird) has done an excellent job with and should be congratulated... I can only wish.
Back to us. Tuesday's game is going to be tough, as all games are in the Southern League. But Yate are flying at the moment and have been playing games which is going to be a huge advantage. Coupled with the fact that we have a few injuries and unavailability's, which from now until the end of the season we are going to get because we will be playing Saturday, Tuesday, Saturday. So with games and travelling it's important to remember the commitment that has to be put in to play at this level.
Lets hope for some good weather between now and Tuesday and maybe, just maybe, we can all enjoy a game and hopefully a Bridgwater win.
Until next time enjoy your football... Millie
Somerset FA Women's (Junior) Cup - Semi-Final
Nailsea United Ladies 1, BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 2
With the pitches at Fairfax Park and Bridgwater College still unfit the fixture was switched to Nailsea, and having not played a match for two months, and on a very heavy pitch, Town were a bit rusty and took some time to get going, but Ami Ward (pictured) gave Town the lead in the first half when she fired over the keeper into the net.
Town allowed Nailsea back into the game early in the second half when some indecision in defence allowed a Nailsea forward to burst through on to a long ball and she slotted past Faye Edwards in Town's goal.
Town, who were on top for most of the game, re-took the lead when recent signing Gabby Coles cut in from the right and hit a strong shot past the Nailsea keeper.
Town hit the woodwork and the Nailsea keeper made several good saves so that the score could have been more convincing. However the game was slightly marred when Town's Jess Chappell had to be taken to hospital with what looked like a serious leg injury following a strong tackle. (We have since learned that her leg is not broken but is badly bruised.)
This victory puts Town into the Cup Final later in the season where they will play either Brislington or Yeovil Town Reserves.
With any luck Town return to League action next Sunday when they play Frome Town Ladies at Fairfax Park, kick-off 2pm.
Above are a couple of pictures taken at Fairfax Park today (02 Feb). The one on the left is of the area of the pitch that caused the game today versus Abingdon United to be postponed, while the one to the right is of the level of the water table underneath the pitch - no wonder the rain has had nowhere to go...!!!
This week our groundsman 'Charlie', helped by former groundsman Winston, has resorted to digging holes in the pitch and pumping away the surface water. This has removed hundreds and hundreds of gallons of water - but their hard work was to no avail for today's game. However, it has given us a better chance for the scheduled game against Yate Town on Tuesday evening (7.45pm) going ahead - provided we have no more damn rain... PLEASE...!!!
LADIES TEAM GAME POSTPONED - AGAIN...
Town's Ladies faced yet another blank match day as their scheduled County Cup tie at home against Nailsea United LFC was postponed due to the wet weather. The game has been rearranged for next Sunday replacing the scheduled league game versus Cleeve West Town. The cup game kicks off at 1.45pm instead of the usual 2pm for league games.
Today (Sun 27 Jan) in the league - where Town Ladies haven't played a game since Sunday 21st October - only one of the scheduled four games took place with Cleeve West Town beating visitors Weymouth 2-1 to climb a place to eighth in the table.
The First Team's scheduled away game against Sholing on Wednesday evening (Jan 30) has been postponed due to the Southampton-based side being involved in a County Cup tie at Havant & Waterlooville the night before. The Havant v Sholing game was twice postponed last week (Tuesday & Wednesday) due to the weather - the second time the postponement came less than an hour before kick off time with everyone at the ground.
The new date for the Sholing game has been set for Monday 18th March (7.45pm kick off). It hasn't been easy finding a date as Sholing have a massive backlog of fixtures and this rearrangement will be the second time they now face playing three times in a week - more to come if the bad weather continues... and they are still in 2 cup competitions...!!!
Tuesday night's scheduled Reserve Team home game against local rivals Bishops Lydeard is already in doubt - unfortunately...!!! The pitch at Fairfax Park is still under water in places with the puddles getting bigger with every shower we have. More rain is forecast over the next few days, so things aren't looking good....!
Pitch inspection at 4pm on Tuesday afternoon.
Hungerford Move Eight Points Clear…
Six games were played in the Evo-Stik League Southern Division One South & West on Saturday, including Hungerford Town, who entertained Bishops Cleeve at Bulpit Lane. And a Bradley Gray effort with just 8 minutes remaining was eventually enough to see off a battling bottom of the table Cleeve side and increase Hungerford`s lead at the top of the table to eight points.
Paulton Rovers` Nick McCootie scored in the opening minute to eventually earn a win 1-0 at Wimborne Town.
Paulton`s neighbours Yate Town continued their rise up the table when two early second half goals gave them a 2-1 home win over second from bottom Taunton Town. Taunton trailed 2-0 to goals in 5 minutes just after half-time from Mitchell Bryant and Scott Wilson before skipper Simon Ingram offered some hope by scoring in the 67th minute.
Evesham United were held to a goalless draw at home by Cirencester Town, while ten-man Didcot Town secured a 5-2 home victory over third-bottom Winchester City The visitors took an early 6th minute lead through Andrew White but Elliott Osborne-Ricketts equalised 3 minutes later. The Railwaymen were reduced to ten-men after just 20 minutes when Ricky Allaway was adjudged to have been `last man` when bringing down White. Liam Robinson restored the visitors` lead in the 31st minute but, despite being down to ten-men, Didcot equalised just past the hour-mark through new signing Mark Janes and went ahead with 20 minutes remaining when Osborne-Ricketts converted from the penalty spot after Winchester keeper Ross Casey had brought down Pablo Haysham and was also dismissed. Morgan Williams bagged a brace in 2 minutes in the final 10 minutes of the game to make it 5-2.
Sholing moved up to fifth-bottom and leap-frog their visitors Abingdon United after a 3-0 win in which Lee Wort netted a hat-trick with goals in the 45th, 70th and 90th minutes.
Once again the weather has beaten us and both our teams had their games postponed due to waterlogged pitches.
The overnight rain at Fairfax Park melted what was left of the snow on the pitch, but, snow turns to water and, with the rain, the pitch flooded again.
The game versus Poole Town has been rearranged for Tuesday 9th April.
Meanwhile... The Reserves had their away game at Nailsea Town postponed last night due to a flooded pitch - see below for the rearranged date which is part of a minor fixture shake up for the team.
Nailsea Town AWAY now Saturday 9th March (3pm)
Nailsea Town HOME from 9th March to Wednesday 6th March (7.45pm)
Cutters Friday HOME from Tuesday 2nd April to Monday 1st April (12 noon)
St George Easton in Gordano HOME from Tuesday 9th April to Wednesday 10th April (7.45pm
The scheduled game for the Reserves at home against Bishops Lydeard on Tuesday night is very much in doubt due to the forecast rain over the next few days (Monday & Tuesday especially).
Points Shared in Only Surviving Game…
The only game to survive in all three divisions of the Evo-Stik League Southern was the Premier Division encounter between Bideford and AFC Totton, who shared the points in an entertaining game at the Sports Ground. A 34th minute header by Matt Andrew gave Biddy a half-time lead, which was cancelled out by a goal 2 minutes into the second half by Richard Gillespie for Totton to send the Hampshire outfit home with a share of the spoils.
Picture here is of Mangotsfield United's Cossham Street ground today (18 Jan) - so it looks certain that the First Team game tomorrow will be off - although it cannot be cancelled officially until the morning.
The two clubs have provisionally agreed that should the weather conditions improve by Tuesday evening (22 Jan) the game will be played then - 7.45pm kick off. Fingers crossed.
No such 'waiting for tomorrow morning' with the Reserve Team's home game against their Odd Down counterparts as the Somerset County League have allowed clubs to cancel games today due to the wintery weather. It is likely that this game will be rearranged for Tuesday 19th March (7.45pm) - the first available Tuesday we have at Fairfax Park.
Photo taken from Twitter c/o Terry Nutkin
Tuesday 15 January 2013 - Round Up...
Division One South & West
Top of the table Hungerford Town scored fourteen minutes from time to win 1-0 at Winchester City but Poole Town stayed five points behind the leaders with five games in hand when they scored twice in each half to complete a comprehensive 4-0 home win over Cinderford Town. Mangotsfield United scored three goals in the first nineteen minutes to secure a 3-0 home victory over bottom of the table Bishops Cleeve and Didcot Town scored three in the last quarter of the match to also record a 3-0 home win against third from bottom Taunton Town.
Leamington took over at the top of the table when they won 4-0 at Weymouth with all their goals coming in the second half while Arlesey Town, two up at half time, moved up to sixth place with a 3-1 victory at Banbury United. Gosport Borough were held 0-0 at home by Frome Town but AFC Totton scored twice in each half to complete a 4-0 home win over bottom of the table Kettering Town.
Division One Central
In the only game to beat the weather Uxbridge, who took the lead two minutes after the break, scored eight minutes from time to secure a 2-1 win at AFC Hayes.
Once again the weather has beaten us. Unfortunately, as you can see from the pictures, the pitch at Fairfax Park is under water again so tonight's scheduled game against North leigh is off.
An early decision was made in part because the match officials for the game were travelling up from Cornwall. And with the amount of standing water on the pitch there is no chance of it draining enough in the time available.
The game has been rearranged for Tuesday 19th March - 7.45pm kick off.
Saturday’s fixtures in Division One South & West were hit by heavy morning rain, causing five matches to be postponed. But in the games played; a goal from Ben Ough in the 11th minute gave leaders Hungerford Town a 1-0 home win against fourth-placed Swindon Supermarine. Third-placed Merthyr Town completed a 3-0 home win against Mangotsfield United with goals from Ryan Prosser after 30 and 83 minutes, sandwiched by a 78th minute Gary Colborne effort for the visitors.
Wimborne Town had to settle for a 2-2 home draw against Didcot Town, who twice came from behind with ten-men. Micky Hubbard converted a 12th minute penalty which saw Didcot keeper Marco Belloli-Perreira red carded for the offence. But despite being down to ten-men for 78 minutes, the Railwaymen had Morgan Williams on target twice in the 46th and 79th minutes, with Aiden Sainsbury scoring the Magpies other on 58 minutes.
Clevedon Town scored in stoppage time at the end of the game through Clayton Fortune to snatch a 1-1 home draw with Evesham United after Sam Adkins had given the visitors a 37th minute lead. Cirencester Town and Cinderford Town shared a 2-2 derby draw in which Sam Collier scored twice for the hosts and Lewis Sommers did likewise for the Foresters. Abingdon United lost 2-1 at home to Winchester City, for whom Andy Robinson after 37 minutes and Adam Beckett after 55 minutes outgunned Carl Self’s 75th minute reply for United. This win brought to an end a run of eight straight defeats for ‘City’.
The following matches were postponed due to the bad weather - Bishops Cleeve v Bridgwater Town, Paulton Rovers v Poole Town, Sholing v North Leigh, Taunton Town v Shortwood United, and Yate Town v Tiverton Town.
Both our First Team and Reserves had their games postponed yesterday due to waterlogged pitches.
The First Team game away at Bishops Cleeve has been rearranged for Wednesday 27th March with a 7.30pm kick off.
Meanwhile... The Reserves - who have only played two games in the last twelve weeks - will now face yesterday's scheduled opponents, Bishops Lydeard, at Fairfax Park on Tuesday 29th January (7.45pm kick off) - weather permitting.
Fingers crossed for Tuesday and the First Team home game versus North Leigh (7.45pm)...
CLUB STATEMENT - UNDER-18 TEAM After lengthy discussion at the Club's Executive Committee Meeting on Wednesday 9th January, unfortunately, the decision has been taken to withdraw our Under-18 team from the Somerset Floodlight Youth League with immediate effect.
This decision has not been taken lightly, and is in response to factors regarding the condition of the playing surface at Fairfax Park and the number of games being played on it at present and for the remainder of the season.
The recent spell of wet weather has, of course, been a major factor in the postponement of several of our First and Reserve team home games which have all been rearranged for midweek - with several replacing scheduled Under-18 team games, And with further bad weather expected over the next few weeks, more games could be at risk.
These rearrangements, coupled with other midweek games we are contracted to host, has meant that finding suitable dates to rearrange Under-18 team fixtures has become increasingly difficult, so the decision to withdraw the team has sadly been forced upon us.
We hope that everyone concerned understands the situation the Club finds itself in. The fact that the Somerset Floodlight Youth League is a midweek competition where playing at weekends is not an option is the problem. We only have one pitch to fit all our teams' matches on and at present, even without the Under-18 team fixtures, we are still committed to staging 3 to 4 games a week until the end of the season.
The Club would like to place on record our thanks to Sam Reilly for his efforts in running the Under-18 Team after taking over at short notice prior to the start of the current season - it is always a thankless task with the constant changing of games due to our other teams' fixtures taking priority.
From Barry Knott @ the Western Daily Press and Sportsouthwest.co.uk…
Bridgwater Town will be looking to bounce back after a run of four games without a victory when they play away to Bishops Cleeve in Division One South and West of the Evo-Stik Southern League tomorrow (Jan 12).
Bridgwater lost 1-0 at home to play-off hopefuls Merthyr Town on Tuesday night, but joint Kevin Milsom was happy with his side's display but obviously not with the result.
"There was only one team in it in the second-half but we simply couldn't score," said Milsom. "I think we gave them too much respect in the opening 20 minutes."
Bridgwater skipper Chris McGrath continues to be sidelined with hamstring trouble.
Bridgwater Town (away v Bishops Cleeve, from): Purnell, Viney, Veal P, Middleton, Simpson, Mountford, Fitzpatrick, McClennan, Vance, Mercieca, Veal C, Legg, Salem, MacNab, Farnham, Sims, Govier, Chamberlain, Paxton, Venning.
There is one late addition to the squad in new signing Alex Rigley (pictured) who has joined Bridgwater from Toolstation League side Gillingham Town.
Attacking left-sided midfielder Alex, who comes from Swindon, has playing at a higher level than Bridgwater in recent seasons and was once on the books at Swindon Town, but due to personal reasons dropped a few levels while things sorted themselves out.
He is now ’back and raring to go’ and the Town management team feel that he will be a more than useful addition to the squad for the remainder of the league campaign with the hectic fixtures schedule over the next few months.
Clevedon Town 1 BRIDGWATER TOWN 1
Millie's post-match comments...
On an afternoon where we had to play on a pitch that was only fit for water polo, we came away with a very well earned and credible 1-1 draw and were much the better side in the second half - and I don't think anyone could have complained if we had taken all 3 points.
It has been a difficult Christmas period which has seen us have 2 game postponed, both of which were home games, so like all clubs it means lack of finances at a difficult time of the season - one that has seen us go to 6th in the table (back to 7th after today's results).
We know where we are and what can be achieved, but are not going to get carried away, We know games will come thick and fast because of postponement so we will take each game as it comes and see where we are at Easter. Hopefully, we'll be there or thereabouts and pushing for honours which on current form would be no more than we deserve.
So fingers crossed for some dry weather and we will see you all at home on Saturday when we welcome Paulton to Fairfax Park and get the first of many New Years wins.
Happy and peaceful new year from players and management...!
Until next time, enjoy your football... Millie
Latest news from Clevedon Town is that hopes of the game being on at The Hand Stadium tomorrow (01 Jan) are improving as the weather today hasn't been as wet as was first feared. A pitch inspection has been arranged for 9.30am in the morning... and everyone has their fingers firmly crossed.
It is recommended that supporters travelling to the game should telephone The Hand Stadium 01275 871600 - AFTER 9.45AM - for the results of the pitch inspection - no point ringing before as they won't know...!!!
From Barry Knott @ Sportsouthwest.co.uk...
Bridgwater Town will be at full strength for their away game against Clevedon Town in Division One South and West tomorrow (Tues 01 Jan) - kick off at 1.00pm.
Their squad will include latest signing Andrew Venning who signed for Bridgwater a couple of weeks ago but has yet to play for them because of the bad weather.
Bridgwater have won seven of their last eight league games and are just outside an end of season play-off spot, having leapt up the table during this run.
Bridgwater Town (away v Clevedon Town, from): Purnell, Viney, Veal P, Middleton, Simpson, Mountford, McGrath, Fitzpatrick, McClennan, Vance, Mercieca, Veal C, Legg, Salem, MacNab, Farnham, Govier, Chamberlain, Paxton, Venning.
Meanwhile... Bridgwater Town's joint manager Kevin Milsom has described the club's main pitch at Fairfax Park as "horrendous." His comments follow yet another postponement of a home game - against Wimborne Town on Saturday (29 Dec).
"We're paying the price of playing too many games on it," said Milsom who runs the side along with Dave Pople.
"I've never seen the pitch look so bad in all my years of football at the club.
"I feel sorry for our groundsman who works so hard in trying to keep it in good shape.
"I know revenue from loaning out the pitch is very important but it comes at the detriment of the first team.
"Even with a modern pitch with good drainage we would still be playing too many games on it," added Milsom.
Unfortunately, today's home game against Taunton Town has been postponed due to a waterlogged pitch. At the early morning inspection the pitch was considered unplayable due to the ground being thoroughly saturated with standing water still in a few areas - and more heavy rain is forecast for lunchtime.
This is obviously a huge disappointment for the Club as a big crowd was expected for the game and the inevitable loss of income. A provisional date of Tuesday 12th February has been pencilled in for the rearrangement - weather permitting - which means moving a Reserve Team game to make way for it.
After overnight rain flooded areas of the pitch again, there will be an early morning (8.30am) pitch inspection at Fairfax Park on Wednesday to see if the scheduled derby game versus Taunton Town goes ahead - scheduled kick off is 1.00pm.
The Club will be doing everything possible in the time available (and with the manpower at its disposal) to get the game on - but, at present the weather looks as though it is against us.
Please telephone the ground number 01278 446899 on Boxing Day for the latest update - after 8.30am please
Bridgwater's unbeaten run, unfortunately, came to an end this afternoon with a 2-0 defeat in the mud and rain at Hungerford in the only game in the division (one of only two in the entire Evo-Stik League Southern) to beat the wet weather.
Millie's post-match comment...
So the good run is over, sadly losing 2-0 at Hungerford this afternoon. But I hope you have all enjoyed it as much as we have. But like they say: "all good things come to an end", but to go seven games unbeaten and only concede one goal speaks volumes for the squad and what we are trying to put together.
The one thing we said to the lads after the game was don't be to hard on yourselves. We conceded two sloppy goals on a very wet afternoon and on another day, and with a bit more luck, could have got something out of the game.
Now it's all about character, and I'm more than sure we have enough of that to bounce back on Wednesday against Taunton. So hopefully we will see lots of you on Boxing Day with lots of Christmas cheer and a good result to go with it.
Until next time... from all of the players and management have a very merry Christmas and thank you for your wonderful support....Millie
From Barry Knott @ sportsouthwest.co.uk
Bridgwater Town will be chasing their eighth successive win when they play away to former leaders Hungerford Town in Division One South and West tomorrow).
Their only doubt is over skipper Chris McGrath who has been visiting Ireland this week and may not be back in time for the game.
Bridgwater will also be looking for a good display before tackling Taunton Town in a derby match at home on Boxing Day (1.00).
"I know our coach Paul West is looking forward to that one," said Bridgwater's joint manager Kevin Milsom today.
Bridgwater Town (away v Hungerford Town, from): Purnell, Viney, Veal P, Middleton, Simpson, Mountford, McGrath, Fitzpatrick, McClennan, Vance, Merciec Veal C, Legg, Salem, MacNab, Farnham, Govier, Chamberlain, Paxton.
Town stormed to a 3-0 home win over Winchester City in Division One South and West tonight (Dec 18) - their seventh in succession - and now lie sixth in the table.
Jon Vance, scorer of two goals in the 6-1 win at Cirencester on Saturday, put Bridgwater ahead after only four minutes with a shot from just outside the penalty area. Graham Mercieca netted with a 30-yard volley to make it 2-0 in the 51st minute and Ross MacNab scored a third in the 56th minute with a tap-in from 5 yards.
Bridgwater failed to concede for a sixth time during this splendid run which has propelled them towards a possible end of season play-off spot.
Final Score from Cirencester.... are you sitting down...???
Cirencester Town 1, BRIDGWATER TOWN 6...
Millie's Post Match Thoughts...
I'll start by saying "yet another away win" which is becoming quite a nice habit and one that feels really good. No-one can take it away from us, from start to finish we were excellent. We rolled our sleeves up, worked really hard, and got our rewards by scoring 6 goals. And it was nice to see in the changing room after the game how disappointed the lads were briefly 'cos we conceded a goal in the 90th minute. That to me shows the character we have in the squad. We want to win every game and play some good football along the way. And those of you who were at Cirencester certainly saw that.
Once again we as a team management and players really appreciate the support you gave this afternoon. Hopefully, now we have put some good results together, we will see a few more people coming through the turnstyles on Tuesday night (18 Dec) when we are at home to Winchester City (KO 7.45pm) where a win could take us up to 6th. So come on down and have a look at an honest bunch of lads playing football the right way. It would be great to see you.
Until next time... enjoy your football... Millie
The early morning pitch inspection at Cirencester was positive and the First Team away game this afternoon goes ahead as scheduled - 3pm kick off.
Meanwhile... The scheduled Reserve Team home game against Weston St Johns has already been postponed due to a waterlogged areas of the Fairfax Park pitch.
Latest News from Cirencester is that they have had a lot of rain in the past few hours so tomorrow's game is now in doubt - a pitch inspection will be held at 10am (the earliest they can get a referee in)...
From Barry Knott at SportSouthWest.co.uk ...
In-form Bridgwater Town, who have had their last two matches postponed, will be hoping for better luck when they play away to Cirencester Town in Division One South and West tomorrow (Dec 15)
Bridgwater have won their last five league games, and joint manager Kevin Milsom said today: "Obviously it would have been nice to have kept the momentum going. It would be good to think we can pick up where we left off."
Skipper Chris McGrath, Tim Legg and Ross MacNab, who all played for Wellington in the Toolstation League last weekend, are back in Bridgwater's squad.
Bridgwater Town (away v Cirencester Town, from): Purnell, Viney, Veal P, Middleton, Simpson, Mountford, McGrath, Fitzpatrick, McClennan, Vance, Merceica, Veal C, Legg, Salem, MacNab, Farnham, Govier, Chamberlain, Paxton.
Meanwhile... the pitch at Fairfax Park has flooded again and tomorrow's scheduled Reserve Team game against Weston St Johns is almost certainly OFF.
Unfortunately, as expected after an early morning pitch inspection today's First Team home game against North Leigh has been postponed due to waterlogged areas on the Fairfax Park pitch. A new date for the game will be rearranged in due course.
Meanwhile... The Reserve Team's game away at Nailsea United is ON and kicks off at 2pm.
Unfortunately, even at this early stage we have to face the fact that it looks as though tomorrow’s First Team home game against North Leigh will be postponed due to areas of the pitch at Fairfax Park being waterlogged - see picture of the area in front of the away team dugout taken around noon today (Fri 7 Dec). There will be a pitch inspection early in the morning (Sat 8 Dec) to see how the land lies (or water in this case).
This is the same problem we faced on Tuesday this week when the scheduled game against Yate Town was postponed - the pitch is saturated and parts are considered ‘dangerous to play on’ by referees when they are called in to make a pitch inspection.
Several factors have caused our current predicament. Firstly; the wet summer we all had which resulted in the water table in the area not going down as in other years. It was great at the time - for the Club that is - not having to spend hundreds of pound on watering the pitch to get the grass to grow. But, it has meant that as soon as any persistent rain fell it didn’t take long to top the water table up again and the resultant drainage issues - which we normally face around February or early March.
Secondly; those of you that have been following Town for many years cannot fail to have noticed the sheer amount of development that has gone on around us over the past dozen years or so. Bridgwater & Albion RFC moving in next door on the northern end (with the level of their purpose-built pitches raised up a couple of metres higher than our pitch), the All Weather Pitch at the southern end, and the three huge new buildings with associated car parking and other expansion of the College Campus on the eastern side - all of which replaced grass areas that used to help soak up any rainfall. As a result all the surface water from much of the surrounding area goes into the same drainage ditches as our pitch drainage and these ditches are struggling to cope with the increase in volume.
And thirdly; the wet period we have been experiencing - like everyone else - over the past two months coupled with the volume of matches that we have tried to play on the pitch in less than ideal conditions. Remember - like most other clubs - it isn’t just the First Team who use our pitch. We also have to accommodate the Reserve Team, Under-18 Team, Ladies Team and Bridgwater College fixtures - plus we get requests from other community organisations for the use of the pitch which we try and accommodate as much as possible. So, when the wet weather started at the end of September we were trying to play games on Saturdays, Sundays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays and Saturdays again, all of which resulted in a rapid deterioration in the condition of the pitch… and now, unfortunately, we are suffering for it.
At the moment, our groundsman is pulling his hair out with worry wondering what to do. But we simply cannot beat the weather (unless we raise enough money to build a stadium with a retractable roof...!!!). Our pitch drainage is working - albeit slower than usual - when it is given the chance. And that is what we need... a week with NO rain and a nice drying wind.
Unfortunately tonight's home game versus Yate Town has had to be postponed due a waterlogged pitch, it will be arranged for a later date in due course. We are hopeful that there will be no more rain this week and that the match against North Leigh on Saturday will be able to go ahead.
Bridgwater Town will be back at near full-strength for their away match against Didcot Town in Division One South and West of the Evo-Stik League Southern tomorrow (Dec 1).
The Robins were without five regulars for the Red Insure Cup tie at Frome Town earlier this week which they lost 5-2. New signing Striker Stan Paxton was also missing from the line up due to transport difficulties - the same problem also befell defender Phil Veal.
Bridgwater, however, will be without skipper and centre-back Chris McGrath for the trip to Oxfordshire who is still suspended - he is serving the second of the one-match bans he has received recently - this one for reaching five cautions for the season which came at the recent game at Shortwood.
Bridgwater Town (away v Didcot Town, from): Purnell, Viney, P Veal, Middleton, Simpson, Mountford, Fitzpatrick, McClennan, Vance, Mercieca, C Veal, Legg, Salem, MacNab, Legg, Farnham, Govier, Chamberlain.
Hopefully, there will be a new face in the Bridgwater side to face Frome Town in the Red Insure Cup tomorrow night (Nov 28) as 21-year-old striker Stan Paxton (pictured) joins from Toolstation League Premier side Willand Rovers. His registration form was completed earlier this evening and emailed to the league for processing in the morning.
Many thanks to Clive Jones (manager) and Tony Baker (secretary) and everyone at Willand for their assistance with the signing.
Stan Paxtonn had joined Willand at the start of the season from Toolstation League rivals Barnstaple Town, where he had been the north Devon side's top goalscorer for two of the previous three seasons.
From the Bridgwater Mercury website...
Bridgwater Town boss Kevin Milsom said it has been a frustrating week for his side after both their scheduled matches fell foul to the weather. Town were due to face Frome Town in the Red Insure Cup and then Winchester City at home in the league until heavy rain left both grounds underwater.
Milsom said: "We have not had a chance to do any training, one because of the water on the ground and also because it would be a logistical nightmare trying to get the team to travel all together. We said to the lads that they need to look after themselves this week and we trust them to do that. We would have loved to keep playing because we are playing really well and you do get frustrated by it. I feel really sorry for the groundsman because he is working really hard to prepare a pitch but the weather and the amount of games being played on it are not making it conducive for Southern League football."
The team are due to play the re-arranged fixture at Frome tomorrow night (Wednesday) ahead of a trip to Didcot Town in the league on Saturday.
Chris McGrath and Kye Mountford both still have to serve one-match suspensions - McGrath for his sending off (for 2 cautions) against Portishead in the premier cup recently and Mountford for reaching 5 cautions for the season - and will miss the Frome game, while McGrath will also miss the Didcot game as he reached 5 cautions for the season in the game at Shortwood - at this level suspensions start 14 days after they are incurred.
The water level at Fairfax Park has gone down somewhat since Wednesday morning but there is still plenty of standing water on the pitch. Pictures left taken at the ground at 9am this morning (rugby ground end top, college end bottom). The pitch isn't draining quickly enough and with more heavy rain forecast for the morning it is 95% certain that the game vs Winchester City tomorrow will be off.
Southern League rules will not allow us to call the game off today to save everyone's time so a pitch inspection by a local referee (the match ref is due to travel from Southampton) to confirm the inevitable is arranged for early tomorrow morning.
However.... If, by some miracle, the forecast rain doesn't arrive, please telephone the ground number (01278 446899) after 10am - NOT BEFORE PLEASE - for the final decision.
RAIN, RAIN GO AWAY.... Both scheduled games for our teams tonight have been postponed due to waterlogged pitches.
The First Team were due to take on Frome Town at Badgers Hill in The Red Insure Cup - this has been rescheduled for next Wednesday (28 Nov) with a 7.45pm kick off and replaces the scheduled trip to Sholing in the league which will be rearranged in due course.
Meanwhile.... The Reserves were due to meet their Street FC counterparts at The Tannery Gound in league action - this has been moved to Saturday 4th May 2013 by the league (at the moment but will almost certainly change again).
Picture (a bit blurred) above taken of Fairfax Park at 8am this morning.... so you can see how bad our ground was and, unfortunately, Saturday's home game v Winchester City is already in doubt. An early pitch inspection will be arranged for Saturday morning (10.30am) to see how things stand so check on the ground number (01278 446899) after that time - not before please - for more details.
Away wins are always very nice and always welcome but Saturrday's away day was particularly nice because as a team we all performed really well. Defenders defended, the midfield boys worked ever so hard both ways to win the ball back and spoil and provide good ball when we were in possession, and the front two worked so hard to make things happen all afternoon.
We were out of the blocks early and were 2 up in no time. We then played with the confidence that a team would have after winning the last 4 games and should have scored more and put the game to bed. But, to be fair, they (Shortwood) had a go and at times made life a bit difficult. But we did all we had to do to win a southern league game in November which is to head, kick, tackle and put balls in the right areas and show great discipline to see the game out very pleasing.
Wednesday sees us go to Frome Town for a Red Issure Cup game so it will be nice to pit our wits against a Premier Division side who I know will be very well organised and difficult to beat. But 5 wins on the bounce - and 4 clean sheets - will stand us in good stead to get something out of the game - remembering it's a place that has not been too kind to us over the last few trips. Hope as many of you can make the trip as possible, and I hope a lot more will be at Fairfax Park next Saturday to enjoy the football we are playing and hopefully see us maintain our fine winning run.
Enjoy your football until next time... Millie
Goals from Ross MacNab on 3 minutes and Jon Vance on 10 minutes were enough for Town to make in five wins on the trot with a 2-0 away win at Shortwood this afternoon.
Match report to follow in due course....
Meanwhile... at Fairfax Park a depleted Reserve team sere knocked out of the Somerset County League Cup by visiting Bishops Lydeard who won with two first-half goals.
Somerset FA Women's Junior Cup
BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 4, CLEEVE WEST TOWN LADIES 0
After two postponements Town Ladies eventually progressed to the quarter finals to play Ilminster Town with this comprehensive victory - even though they started slowly and it was Cleeve who took the game to the home side early on - writes Rick Norman.
But the Bridgy girls soon settled into their game and took the lead in the 13th minute when Anusia Rourke fired home from the edge of the penalty area. This visibly lifted the team and they went further ahead after twenty minutes when Vicky Tindall ran onto a pass and drove the ball high into the net.
Town were looking comfortable now but Cleeve came back into the game with former Town player Gemma Baker twice going close. However, Town more or less sealed the game after thirty minutes when Anusia Rourke took a left wing pass from Jess Chappell before turning sharply and shooting strongly past the Cleeve keeper.
The second half started evenly with both sides creating chances but it was Town who increased their lead when Devon Rich (pictured) cut in from the left and hit an unstoppable twenty five yard shot into the top corner. Baker then hit the bar for Cleeve after lobbing Town keeper Faye Edwards but that was the closest they came. Town created several good chances late on but were unable to increase their lead.
After some confusion over the date of the next round, Town will now face old enemies Ilminster, who beat Town in the final of this competition two seasons ago, at Fairfax park on Sunday 25th November. But before that, next week Town are at home again in a league match against Frome Town, kick-off 2pm.
Well another win - four on the bounce - and the third clean sheet makes us all very happy. And it's no more than we deserve. While the last three games have not probably been the most entertaining of games, they have all resulted in wins.
We have not played the football we played at the start of the season which saw us playing some very existing football but not getting the results we deserved, which was somewhat disappointing. So now the pitches have changed and got a bit heavier we have probably been a little bit more direct by getting the ball forward and supporting quicker, which I hope you have all enjoyed. (But then again you should be enjoying any Bridgwater Town win weather it be 1-0 or 3-2.)
It really is a shame that Tuesday night's game v Merthyr has been postponed because when you are winning and playing with the confidence like we are you just want to keep playing.
On a pitch note... it's been very wet and heavy the last few games and while it not ideal Charlie must take a big pat on the back for all his hard work. It's not easy to prepare a pitch when there are as many games as there are played on it - and I totally understand Charlie's frustrations.
Next Saturday sees us go to Shortwood which will be another hard game. Whilst they are new to the league they have always been a club that have got really good results. I've enjoyed going there in the past and I've always got some good results. So let's hope Saturday will be as kind.
Until next time.... enjoy your football... Millie
Division One South & West - 10-11-12
Leaders Hungerford Town, a goal
behind at half time, scored twice after the break to win 2-1 at home against
Evesham United but second placed Tiverton Town had to settle for a point froma
1-1 draw at fifth in the table Cirencester Town while Poole Town, a goal up at
the interval, moved into third with a 3-0 victory at Mangotsfield United and
Swindon Supermarine scored twice in each half to move into fourth place with a
4-0 home win over Winchester City. Wimborne Town equalised from a penalty just
after the half hour mark, having gone behind seven minutes earlier, before going
on to win 2-1 at home against North Leigh with the winning goal coming in the
third minute of time added on but Cinderford Town went down 1-0 at Bridgwater
when the home side scored after the break and Clevedon Town were held to a 1-1
draw at home by Bishops Cleeve. Abingdon United scored three times in the first
half to defeat visiting Taunton Town 3-0 and Paulton Rovers scored fifteen
minutes from time to complete a 3-2 home victory over bottom of the table Yate
A 64th minute goal, headed in from a corner, by Ross MacNab (pictured) was enough for Town to bag the three points with a 1-0 home win against Cinderford Town this afternoon (10 Nov). More on the game to follow...
Meanwhile... Merthyr Town drew with Shortwood United in The FA Trophy this afternoon and face a replay on Tuesday night - so Town's scheduled game against The Martyrs at Fairfax Park that night must be rearranged.
Goals by Steve Fitzpatrick on 53 minutes and Jon Vance, with a superb curling free kick, two minutes into stoppage time, earned Town a hard-fought 2-1 victory at home against Portishead Town in the Somerset FA Premier Cup Second Round tonight (6 Nov).
More details to follow...
Town joint boss Kevin Milsom is confident his side can overcome a potential banana skin against Portishead tonight (November 6).
Bridgwater welcome their lowly opponents to Fairfax Park for a Somerset Premier Cup clash on the back of a superb victory at high-flying Evesham United on Saturday.
After that success the roles will be reversed with Bridgwater firm favourites to beat the Toolstation Western League Division One outfit.
Milsom told the Bridgwater Mercury: “I’m confident that if we apply ourselves we should progress and get the result we want. The shoe will be on the other foot so to speak with them coming to play us from their league as underdogs. It’s another game and the boys should be up for it just as much as the league – it beats training doesn’t it.”
Jon Vance scored the only goal in Bridgwater’s 1-0 win at Evesham to make it two wins on the bounce in the league and lift them up to 16th. Milsom says his side came through the encounter unscathed and expects to have the same squad available to him for tonight’s showdown.
He added: “It was an excellent result at a very good side. They’ve got everything you want as a club – new stadium, a good set up and everything right on and off the pitch.
“Full credit to the boys – there’s nothing better than a 1-0 and a clean sheet away from home.Meanwhile, Millie revealed to Barry Knott from the Western Daily Press at the weekend that he has skin cancer. The 51-year-old, who played for Cirencester Town, Weston Super Mare, Clevedon Town and Bridgwater, says he was told five weeks ago. "I'm awaiting the results of tests but I hope to continue with my footballing duties," he said. However, Milsom decided to "take a break from football over the weekend."
An 84th minute goal by Jon Vance was enough for Town to come away from Evesham with all three points this afternoon. See the Match Report section for more details...
Town will be looking for their first back to back wins of the season when they play away to Evesham United in Division One South and West tomorrow (Nov 3)
Defender Tim Legg (pictured) is one of three players added to the squad, having missed the 3-0 home win over Bishops Cleeve through work commitments.
"Bishops Cleeve never really troubled us," Bridgwater's joint manager Kevin Milsom told Sportsouthwest.co.uk’s reporter Barry Knott. "They were not very special but there again you can only beat what is in front of you."
Bridgwater Town (away v Evesham United, from): Purnell, Viney, Veal P, McGrath, Middleton, Mountford, Simpson, Fitzpatrick, McClennan, Vance, Mercieca, Veal C, Legg, Salem, MacNab, Legg, Farnham, Govier.
The funeral of long-serving Club stalwart BRIAN AUSTIN (BA to his friends) will be held at Wembdon Church on Friday 9th November at 10,30am. This will be followed by a wake for his Family & Friends at the West India House from approx 1.00pm.
On a lighter note.... If you can get internet access up in Heaven now BA, you can still email your programme notes... We will change the title to 'A View From Above The Goal'...!!! We're sure that when you meet up with Jim Perry and all the other former Robins fans up there you will find plenty to write about.
Cheers BA - See you mate...
BATTLE OF THE ROBINS IN RED INSURE CUP:
Town's First Team have been drawn away against Evo Stik League Southern Premier Division side FROME TOWN in the Second Round of the Red Insure Cup.
The game is scheduled for Wednesday 21st November with a 7.45pm kick off at Badgers Hill and the home side have announced reduced admission prices for the game: £6 for adults and £3 for concessions.
Other ties for Division One SW sides to be played in week commencing 19th November:
Didcot Town v Beaconsfield SYCOB (20th)
Hungerford Town v North Leigh (19th)
Mangotsfield United v Shortwood United (19th)
Sholing v Winchester City or Gosport Borough (21st)
Tiverton Town v Paulton Rovers (20th)
Wimborne Town v Poole Town (20th)
Yate Town v Cinderford Town (20th)
The Third Round is scheduled for week commencing 7th January 2013.
It is with great sadness that we must pass on the news of the death yesterday of long-time Club stalwart Brian Austin who had been in hospital since suffering a severe stroke almost a year ago.
B.A. (as he was known) had followed the ‘Town’ for more years than we can remember and performed many duties for the Club over the years. He was also a regular contributor to the pages of our matchday programme in recent times and he was never short of a ‘View’ on what was going on - both on the field of play and off. He will be sadly missed by us all.
Our condolences go to his family and friends at this sad time.
Town suffer a double blow.
Striker Dave Pearse (pictured left) is joining rivals Tiverton Town while defender Kye Thomas (pictured right) has been ruled out for the rest of the season with damaged knee ligaments.
Pearse previously played for half a season at another Devon club Bideford - who he joined from Street - before joining Bridgwater at the beginning of last season. Both Paulton Rovers and Taunton Town tried to sign him last season without success. Pearse has been a regular in Bridgwater's side since joining them.
Dave Pearse told Dan Milligan from the Bridgwater Mercury: “I want to say thank you to everyone involved at the club – the managers, players and supporters. I have enjoyed my time at Fairfax Park but feel it’s time to move on.”
Thomas was injured early on in Saturday's 3-0 defeat at Bognor Regis in the FA Trophy and Bridgwater's joint manager Kevin Milsom told Sportsouthwest.com's Barry Knott last night: "It happened right in front of us and we knew it was serious. He faces an operation and could be out for nine months."
Three of Town's Reserves have been signed on Southern League forms to bolster the numbers and provide options for the management team. Long-time Town stalwart Tyne Govier - who was in the squad for the recent home FA Trophy game v Hemel Hempstead - will add to the defensive ranks while Kenzie Farnham and Lee Villis provide alternatives up front.
Meanwhile, Bridgwater will be back in action tonight (Tues) when they play at home to Bishops Cleeve in Division One South and West. Centre back Bradley Middleton returns to the side after completing a one-match ban for collecting five bookings.
Bridgwater Town (home v Bishops Cleeve, from): Purnell, Viney, Veal P, McGrath, Middleton, Mountford, Simpson, Fitzpatrick, McClennan, Vance, Pearse, Mercieca, Veal C, Legg, Salem, MacNab, Chamberlain.
Bridgwater Town will be without centre back Bradley Middleton (pictured) for Saturday's (Oct 27) away game against Bognor Regis in the second qualifying round of the FA Trophy.Middleton is serving a one-match ban for collecting five bookings this season.
"Obviously we'll be looking for a much better display following Saturday's poor display against Swindon Supermarine," Bridgwater's joint manager Kevin Milsom told Barry Knott from sportsouthwest.com. "We were poor from one to 11."
"Bradley is one of our most dependable defenders, so we will miss him."
Bridgwater Town (away v Bognor Regis, from): Purnell, Viney, Veal P, McGrath, Thomas, Mountford, Simpson, Fitzpatrick, McClennan, Vance, Pearse, Merceica, Veal C, Legg, Salem, MacNab, Chamberlain. .
WEYMOUTH LADIES 2, BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 1
With eight regular players out through injury, illness and unavailability Town put out a patched up side who showed a lot of resiliance and fight and were a little unlucky not to come away with a point.
At times it was a backs to the wall performance but the defence held firm until the 30th minute when keeper Fay Edwards made a superb save, only to see the ball bounce into the path of a Weymouth player who headed the ball into the net.
The second half saw Town come into the game more, but after an hour a corner from the left was flicked in to give Weymouth a two goal lead.
Fay Edwards then made a great save, tipping a drive onto the bar, before Town were back in the game with an excellent goal.
Anneka Russ (pictured) collected.the ball and advanced towards the Weymouth goal. She cut inside and from 25 yards hit a ferocious drive that left the Weymouth keeper standing as the ball flew over her head into the net.
This lifted Town who tried hard to find an equalizer, but it was not to be.
All players must be given credit for a battling performance, with special mention to Jess Chappell for a hard-working effort despite feeling unwell.
Next week Town Ladies are at home to Cleeve West Town in the Somerset FA Women's (Junior) Cup with a 2pm kick off.
Well what an afternoon we had yesterday.
Firstly let's not detracted from the fact that we as a team, 1 to 11, were awful. We didn't work hard enough and showed no passion or desire to win a game of football - which is not good whatever level you play at.
Goals win games and the first goal in any game is always important. So to go behind to the goal we went behind to yesterday was particularly disappointing. But unfortunately we have seen it all too often this season. It's now been the fifth time we have been on the wrong end of a shocking decision. It's alright saying after the event I got it wrong... but that's no help to us and no good to you the paying public.
We see assessors at most games now but I ask the question why 'cos the same mistakes are being made. As a manager you don't mind the little ones like a throw in going the wrong way... but to get the big decisions that change games so wrong on so many occasion is a bit worrying.
We all know it's a hard job these days and the game has changed. But if you are refereeing at a good level, surly 95 per cent of it is common sense so why make it difficult for yourself.
Yesterday the lineman (sorry assistant referee) gave the referee his 'get out of jail card' and said the keeper was injured. So the question is why did he not make it easy for himself and disallow the goal and restart the game with an uncontested drop ball? The same reason as he made himself unapproachable at the end of the game.
I've been honest and made a statement that our performance was not acceptable and will answer to you the paying public and the chairman when needed so why can't it work both ways.
We now have a week to work hard and get things right for Saturday's visit to Bognor Regis, and be assured if we don't apply ourselves properly we know what we can expect. So I'm looking for a massive improvement on Saturdays performance.
Look forward to seeing you on Saturday. Enjoy your football until next time...
BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 1, CHELTENHAM TOWN LADIES 2
This was a highly entertaining Premier Division game which saw both side create numerous chances with a combination of excellent goalkeeping, woodwork and missed chances keeping the score down.
The first half was an even affair with Town starting the stronger and hitting the post. Cheltenham came back strongly and had the ball in the net only to see it struck off for offside However, Cheltenham started to get on top and in the 36 minute they went ahead when a shot through a crowded goalmouth saw the ball fly past an unsighted Fay Edwards in the Town goal.
After the break Town started strongly but couldn't find a way through a well-organized Cheltenham defence. Town thought they had levelled mid-way through the half when Katie England put the ball in the net after an Anneka Russ pass only to see it ruled out for offside. Cheltenham struck the bar twice and Fay Edwards pulled off two excellent saves to keep town in the game.
Then in the 75th minute Town's luck changed when a long right wing cross by Anusia Rourke caught out the Cheltenham keeper and the ball went in at the far post to level the scores.
Georgia Coles then had a shot well saved before Cheltenham went ahead after 85 minutes, when a long cross field pass from the left found the Cheltenham right winger who took the ball on and fired it past Fay Edwards.
This was a disappointing result but Town showed a lot of promise in what is sure to be a long hard season.
Next week The Ladies are away to Weymouth Ladies who they thrashed last week, but it is sure to be a much tougher match this time.
THE ROYAL NAVY LADIES 3. BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 2
Town Ladies took on the ladies of the Royal Navy at H.M.S. Heron, Yeovilton on Wednesday evening and narrowly missed out on a share of the spoils.
Town found themselves two goals down at the break, but came back strongly in the second half and leveled the match thanks to two goals by Anusia Rourke.
The Navy, however, scored a third near the end to deny Town a draw.
This was a good workout for the ladies against a strong and fit Navy Team.
Bridgwater Town Ladies 7, Weymouth Ladies 0
South West Women's League Premier Division - Sunday 7 Oct 2012
Town Ladies recovered well from last weeks Cup defeat by totally overwhelming a depleted but spirited Weymouth team.
Town went ahead as early as the second minute when Ami Ward (pictured) touched home a Jess Chappell pass and the lead was doubled on 13 minutes when Town were awarded a penalty after Aneka Russ was tripped with Vicky Tindall duly dispatching the resulting kick.
Number 3 came after 29 minutes when Aneka Russ put the ball away following a corner and the fourth came 6 minutes later when a defender put the ball into her own net from a Russ cross.
After Half time Town continued where they left off and after 49 minutes Devon Rich burst through and fired firmly past the keeper to make it 5-0.
Town were playing some good football and were passing the ball around well.
The sixth goal came in the 70th minute when Anusia Rourke struck a wonderful long range shot high into the net giving the Weymouth keeper no chance, and Town's final goal came on 80 minutes when Hannah Brown passed the ball out wide right to Ami Ward, who cut in, and hit a delightful dipping shot over the keeper into the far corner.
This was an excellent performance with lots of effort from all players. A lot of credit must also go to the plucky visitors who, despite being a player short, kept going right to the end and never gave up.
Next week the Ladies Team are at home again when Cheltenham Town Ladies visit Fairfax Park with a 2pm kick off. Cheltenham were one of the teams Town Ladies beat in their FA Women's Cup run last season.
The day's other results:
Cleeve West Town 2 - 1 Plymstock United
Downend Flyers 0 - 4 Bristol Ladies Union
Larkhall Athletic 5 - 0 Cheltenham Town
Stoke Lane Athletic 1 - 3 Frome Town
What a great performance for those of you who travelled on the long journey to Hemel Hemsted, and "Thank You" for your great support and lots of wonderful cheering you gave throughout the evening.
It was always going to be a difficult place to go and get a result, but get a result we did. I thought we were fabulous all night and deserved the result. We played some great attacking football and defended so well all night and both buzz and myself were very proud of the performance and could not have asked for more.
Now onto Saturday... and let's hope we can now get a couple of league wins under our belts and go on to play some more attractive football which I'm enjoying so much. Like I told the lads after last Saturdays game, I'd pay no problem, to come in and watch the football we are producing at the moment... no problem...!!!
Look forward to seeing you all Saturday...
We're on our way to Bognor... La la, la, la...
Town pulled off a cup upset by turning over Hemel Hempstead 3-1 last night (October 2).
The Robins took the lead against the Southern League Premier Division side after 25 minutes through Dave Pearse - a lead which they held on to until nine minutes from time.
But the team responded and Joe McClennan and Jon Vance produced superb individual goals to seal the win and see the club pocked £2,550 in prize money.
Boss Kevin Milsom (pictured centre) said: "The team showed amazing character because it was a difficult place to go and they didn't make things easy for us on or off the pitch. It was a good team performance, I couldn't pick anyone in particular out, and it is reward for Hemel Hempstead's arrogance when they came to us on Saturday.
It is great to go on a cup run and all helps later in the season when we may look to add to the squad."
The first half was end to end but the home side were caught wanting the extra touch in the box and twice missed good opportunities.
Meanwhile, Bridgwater were not idle moving the ball swiftly in midfield with the Hemel keeper Osborn kept on his toes as McClennan and Steve Fitzpatrick stung his palms.
Bridgwater went in front on the 25-minute-mark after Pearse got in front of his marker to score with a diving header from a pinpoint Kye Mountford cross.
Two minutes earlier, Pearse had seen his lob just finish the wrong side of the post.
The goal gave Bridgwater confidence and Kye Thomas and Fitzpatrick had good efforts well saved by Osborn.
In the second half and with the wind and rain behind them, Hemel dominated and put the Bridgwater back four under a lot of pressure.
Bradley Middleton and his defence kept getting the blocks in to protect Luke Purnell who should have been beaten when O'Leary got in a great position but could only direct a tame header to him.
Hemel got their equaliser on 81 minutes when O'Leary made amends to crash the ball home following a dangerous cross.
But an undeterred Bridgwater team reacted immediately and McLennan's darting run through the middle of the Hemel defence saw him unleash a shot past Osborn to put his team back in the lead.
The match was sealed in injury time when Vance picked the ball up in his own half and went through unchallenged to score Bridgwater's third goal and bag their spot in the next round to face a trip to Ryman Premier Division side Bognor Regis Town on October 27.
Team: Purnell, Thomas, P Veal, Middleton, Simpson, Mountford (McNabb 47), Vance, Fitzpatrick, McClennan, Mercieca (Ben Salem 90), Pearse
Goals by Dave Pearse (26 mins), Joe Mclennan (84) and Jon Vance (90+3) gained Town a memorable 3-1 away win at Hemel Hempstead Town in the FA Carlsberg Trophy First Round Qualifying Replay this evening (2 Oct) and set up an away trip to Ryman League Premier Division side Bognor Regis Town in the next round on Saturday 27 October.
Town also bagged the £2550 prize money.
More details to follow...
HIT COUNTER - 2 weeks
South West Women's League Premier Division
BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 3, Plymstock United Ladies 2
This was an entertaining game that Town could have won by a larger margin had they had more composure in their finishing.
The early part of the game was even. Town created a couple of chances that went begging and Plymstock were well contained by a robust Town defence and were restricted to a couple of shots from distance which Town goalkeeper Fay Edwards easily saved.
In the 20th minute Town eventually went ahead when Anusia Rourke latched on to a through pass and outpaced the visitors' defence and slotted the ball past the 'keeper.
Town continued to have the better of the half and should have gone further ahead, but squandered several good chances and the score remained 1-0 at half-time.
In the second period Town continued to take the game to Plymstock and were rewarded in the 56th minute when a Plymstock attack broke down on the edge of Town's penalty area and a wonderful passing move up the pitch resulted in a cross from the right being chased by Rourke. Her pressure on the goalkeeper saw the keeper fumble the ball which gave Rourke, who could have scored herself, the chance to square to Katie England (pictured) to tap in to an empty net.
Plymstock were not finished though and got back into the game after 65 minutes when Town gave away a needless free kick on the edge of their penalty area which was dispatched into the top left hand corner giving Edwards no chance in the Town goal.
The home side then looked a bit shaky for a while but eventually went back into a two goal lead on 75 minutes when Katie England forced the ball home after three shots had been blocked on the goal-line.
The visitors wouldn't lie down though and in the 85th minute they were awarded a penalty - after Hannah Brown was harshly adjudged to have handled - which was dispatched leaving Town a nervy few minutes before the final whistle.
Town deserved the victory but it could have been a lot easier had they taken their chances.
Next week the Ladies are at home to Stoke Lane United in the FA Women's Cup with a 2pm kick-off at Fairfax Park - admission FREE.
After the heavy rain that fell overnight, unfortunately, we have had to cancel tonight's schedules Showmans' Guild match (picture taken this morning) at Fairfax Park.
Hopefully, the pitch will drain enough to allow tomorrow night's scheduled Reserve team game v Minehead to go ahead as planned (7.45pm kick off).
Saturday 22 Sept...
Division One South & West
Leaders Poole Town, behind to a sixth minute penalty, scored twice in four minutes early in the second half to win 2-1 at home against Bridgwater Town while Cirencester Town, two ahead after thirteen minutes, moved into second place with a 3-1 home win over Winchester City and Tiverton Town scored twelve minutes from time to defeat visitors Shortwood United 2-1 and take over third place. Evesham United, a goal ahead at the break, moved up two places to fourth despite being held to a 1-1 draw at Paulton Rovers, who slipped into the bottom two allowing previous occupants, Mangotsfield United, a goal up after five minutes, to move up four places with a 2-1 victory at Abingdon United. Wimborne Town slipped from second to fifth in the table when they lost 3-1 at home to Cinderford Town and, in the day's other game, Taunton Town, despite going behind in the eleventh minute, took the points with a 3-2 home win over Swindon Supermarine.
FA Cup Second Round Qualifying
On Friday Didcot Town, a goal behind at half time, scored three times after the break to move into the Second Round Qualifying with a 3-1 home win over Clevedon Town.
Yate Town, pointless in the League, pulled off the surprise result of the day with a 2-1 home victory over Conference North Oxford City and North Leigh scored nineteen minutes into the second half to inflict a 1-0 defeat on their Conference South visitors, Havant & Waterlooville, while Premier Division AFC Totton, two ahead a minute after the break, came away from Conference South Truro City with a 3-2 victory. Arlesey Town scored in the final minute to win 1-0 at home against Dulwich Hamlet while St Albans City, who scored four times before the break, completed a comfortable 6-2 win at Ashford Town (Middx) and Barwell, one up at the interval, scored twice in the final eleven minutes to win 3-2 at home against Bedworth United in an all Premier Division tie. Chippenham Town, trailing at half time, scored twice after the break to win 2-1 at Division One South & West Bishops Cleeve while Cambridge City completed a 3-1 home win over Grantham Town and Chalfont St Peter scored mid way through the second half to record a fine 1-0 victory at Isthmian Premier Division Carshalton Athletic. Sholing completed a comfortable 3-1 win at Gillingham Town and Gosport Borough scored twice in the first half to win 2-0 at home in another all Premier Division clash against Bideford. Merthyr Town were held to a 0-0 draw at home by Hungerford Town while Northwood, ahead after just five minutes, drew 1-1 at home against AFC Dunstable and Hitchin Town, trailing at the interval, scored eleven minutes into the second half to secure a replay with a 1-1 draw at Whitehawk. Elsewhere there were defeats at the hands of Conference clubs for for Weymouth who, despite going ahead, went down 3-1 at Basingstoke Town, Kettering Town lost 1-0 at Boston United, Daventry Town conceded four goals in the final twenty minutes to lose 4-0 at Conference North leaders Brackley Town, Leamington went out 3-2 at Corby Town despite having taken a fifth minute lead, Frome Town lost 2-0 at home to Weston Super Mare, Thatcham Town lost 2-1 away at Gloucester City, and St Neots Town lost 2-1 at home to Boreham Wood.
Division One Central
Top of the table Godalming Town, a goal up at half time, maintained their perfect start to the season with a 3-1 victory at Royston Town, at the same time inflicting the first defeat of the season on their hosts, while second placed Guildford City also kept their hundred percent record with two goals in each half giving them a 4-2 home win over Barton Rovers while Burnham, who scored three times in the ten first half minutes after going behind, moved into third place with a resounding 5-1 home win against North Greenford United. Biggleswade Town moved up four places to fifth when a goal in each half gave them a 2-0 victory at Fleet Town but Beaconsfield SYCOB, behind at the break, dropped to sixth place when they were held 1-1 at home by Aylesbury while AFC Hayes scored three minutes from time to record a 1-0 win at Chertsey Town.
|Devon Rich - final goal scorer on the day|
South West Women's League Premier Division
Cleeve West Town Ladies 2, BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 6
Town Ladies got back to winning ways with this comprehensive victory in which they played extremely well and dominated the game for long periods.
It took until the half-hour mark for Town to make the breakthrough, but it came when a cross to Chelsea Pitt was controlled and laid off into the path of new striker Anusia Rourke who put the ball in from 5 yards.
Ten minutes later, a poor clearance from the Cleeve keeper went straight to Rourke who took the ball on and fired past the advancing keeper for her second goal.
After half-time Cleeve pulled a goal back in the 50th minute when a cross resulted in a goalmouth scramble. Unfortunately, in trying to clear, fullback Chelsey Pitchers only succeeded in putting the ball into her own net.
However, Town came straight back and restored their two goal lead in the 53rd minute when a cross from the right found Rourke at the far post and she swept the ball home to complete her hat trick.
This knocked Cleeve's confidence somewhat and Town scored a fourth goal in the 56th minute, when midfielder Georgia Coles slipped the ball through the Cleeve defence for Rourke to round the keeper and score her fourth goal of the match.
Cleeve weren't finished though and pulled a goal back on the hour mark when a long ball caught out the Town defence allowing a Cleeve forward to lob the ball over Town keeper Fay Edwards.
After 80 minutes a cross from the left by Devon Rich was flicked on by Rourke into the path of Anneka Russ who drilled the ball past the keeper, and just before the end the scoring was completed when Rich (pictured) cut in from the left and shot past the keeper from an acute angle for number six.
This rounded off a very good and disciplined display and next week the Ladies have their first Home fixture at Fairfax Park, against Plymstock United from Devon - kick-off 2pm.
By Rick Norman
Well what could you say after watching that fine performance at Abingdon on Saturday afternoon.
Two-nil down away from home early in the first half many of you must have thought this is not going to be our day. But we all knew that if we play football the way we can then we could get something out of the game, and as soon as we scored the first goal there was only going to be one winner.
The confidents we showed and the way we passed the ball was exceptional, and the biggest bonus for me was how much enjoyment we as a team got from the game.
We have always said it will take time for everything to gel and maybe it's happening quicker than we expected. But we know where we are at the moment, and while we are all existed about what we have we are also aware it's still early days - but I've got a really good feeling that the best is still to come.
This coming Saturday see's us go to Poole Town which will be a good test and we can then asses how far we have come in a short time. We will go into the game confident and with nothing to fear and hopefully come away with all three points.
Hope to enjoy your company at Poole on Saturday and we are all looking forward to getting home to Fairfax Park for what has been a rare occurrence this season so far - it seems we have been away for ever.
On a players front I don't have too much news. Ross MacNab has a hamstring strain, but otherwise everyone is fit and very much enjoying what we have worked hard to put together, and as I'm sure you will agree there is some real quality in the squad which in turn I hope you are all enjoying...
FIRSTS COME BACK FROM TWO DOWN TO WIN AT ABINGDON... WHILE THE RESERVES WIN AT COLERIDGE VALE...
Town's first team came back from 2 goals down after 19 minutes to win 4-2 at Northcourt Road against divisional rivals Abingdon United in The FA Carlsberg Trophy this afternoon (15 Sept).
On target for The Robins were Kye Thomas in the 39th minute (with a superb curling 25-yarder), Dave Pearse (42), Craig Veal (75) and Jon Vance (80).
Town bring home the £2,300 prize pot and now face Evo-Stik League Southern Premier Division side Hemel Hempstead Town at Fairfax Park on Saturday 29 September in the next round.
Meanwhile... Reserve Team captain Kenzie Farnham and Adam Long were the goalscoring heroes as Town's second string won on the road against Clevedon United to move up to 9th place the the Premier Division of the Somerset County League.
They say football is all about opinions and I've just been reading the match report written by the Tiverton press officer which describes last Saturday's game as 'the worst game he has seen in years'.
I thought, as did 'Buzz', it was a great advert for Southern League football where you saw two honest sides competing with everything to achieve a win. An away team that went one up and played with lots of passion and determination to gain a win and a home side that was bold and made difficult decisions at half time to get a result. It was also a game in which both players and management respected each other and a game very well officiated.
On a players note; it looks like Craig Mawford has decided to move to Taunton where he will link up with his good friend Leigh Robinson, which I'm a little bit cross about because if it was a decision purely made on football maybe I could understand. So we have been quick to bring in a replacement in Darren Rice who's an honest lad and will bring us quality.
Look forward to seeing you all at Abingdon on Saturday... Millie
Last week's hit counter...
Down from 1899 last week
UNION'S HOME ADVANTAGE - IN MORE WAYS THAN ONE - BEAT TOWN LADIES...
Bristol Ladies Union 3, BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 2
Town Ladies travelled to Bristol for the third successive week and can count themselves unlucky to loose this close encounter.
With several players unavailable a depleted Town side were put under early pressure with Union hitting the bar, but strong defensive work kept the Union forwards at bay.
Town gradually came back into the match and they went in front on 30 minutes after they were awarded a free kick outside the penalty area. Hannah Brown (pictured) took the kick and smashed it over the wall into the top corner.
Unfortunately, Town failed to keep their concentration and allowed Union to equalize within a minute. A long ball out of defence caught Town square and allowed a Union forward to run on to the through-ball and slot it past 'keeper Fay Edwards.
Just before the break Edwards brought off a great save to keep thing even at the half-time interval.
Town started the second half well and dominated the game without making a breakthrough. However, they went in front again after 60 minutes when Chelsea Pitt turned the ball in from close range.
Two late goals - in the 80th and 90th minutes - both of which had more than a hint of offside - condemned Town to defeat in a game they deserved to win.
Manager Ben Norman was pleased with the performance despite the result, describing it as a great team effort.
Next week, Town are away again at Cleeve West Town, Kick-off 2pm.
For the second week running, there were serious questions to be asked as to the appointing of match officials to these Bristol games - who are supposed to be neutral - as it turned out that the Assistant Referee who was at the centre of two crucial decisions late in the game was the son of the home side's manager...!!!
POINT FOR FIRSTS - BUT RESERVES GO DOWN...
A Craig Veal goal put Bridgy ahead in the 20th minute against Tiverton at Ladysmead but they had to settle for a point after the home side levelled in the second half.
Town team and more details to follow...
Meanwhile... It was a bad day at the office for Town's Reserves as they went down 4-0 on their travels at Weston St Johns.
MIDWEEK ROUND UP...
Division One South & West - On Monday evening Merthyr Town
scored twice after the interval to inflict a 2-0 home defeat on Mangotsfield
United and maintain their unbeaten start to the season.
Poole Town went to the
top of the table when a goal early in the second half gave them a 1-0 home win
over Paulton Rovers while Winchester City dropped to second when a penalty with
twenty minutes remaining gave Abingdon United a 1-0 away victory but North
Leigh, trailing six minutes into the second half, scored three times in twelve
minutes to go third with a 3-1 home win over Sholing. Cirencester Town, 2-1
winners at Cinderford Town, and Evesham United, who beat visiting Clevedon Town
3-2, occupy fifth and sixth places just three points behind the leaders but
Wimborne Town, ahead after six minutes, had to settle for a 2-1 draw at Didcot
Town while Tiverton Town scored twice in the second half to win 2-0 at home
against Yate Town and leave the visitors still looking for their first point. In
Tuesday's other game Shortwood United, trailing at half time, recorded their
first win when two goals after the break gave them a 2-1 home victory over
On Wednesday a second minute strike was sufficient for Swindon Supermarine to
take the points with a 1-0 home win over Hungerford Town.
FA Cup Preliminary Round - On Tuesday Bishops Cleeve
struck in the first and last minutes to secure a 2-1 win against Ascot United
who scored their consolation goal in the third minute of time added on.
FIRST TEAM WIN AT PAULTON... RESERVES WIN IN THE CUP...
Despite going 1-0 down in the first minutes Town fough back to gain their first win of the season with a 4-1 victory at Paulton Rovers this afternoon (01 Sept).
Dave Pearse levelled the scores with a 35th minute goal before Tim Legg put Town ahead in the 53rd minute. The win was sealed with goals from Joe McClennan in the 62nd minutes and Steve Fitzpatrick in the 78th.
Town Team: L Purnell, P Veal, K Thomas, B Middleton, C McGrath, T Legg, J McClennan, K Mountford, D Pearse [sub R MacNab 75 (sub C Veal 86)], J Vance, S Fitzpatrick - Not used: O Chamberlain, C Mawford, Z Simpson.
Meanwhile... The Reserves travelled to Shepton Mallet Reserves in the Somerset FA Senior Cup (sponsored by Melhuish & Saunders) and came away with a fine 2-1 win to progress into the next round on 6th October.
On target for the Reserves were Lewis Hembery (with a fine free kick) and Jake Mawford.
Reserve Team: G Turner, Champion (sub Reed), O'Neil, Hilton (sub Gamblin), Hembery, Govier, J Mawford, Duffy (sub Bennett), Farnham, Villis, Hurley. Not used: Devitt.
The Club Constitution is now on the website - please look under the CLUB drop down menu - or click here.
If anyone has a point to raise regarding the contents of the Constitution, please contact the Club as indicated by outgoing chairman Alan Hurford at last night's (Thurs 29 Aug) Annual General Meeting by Friday 7th September 2012.
Here's something about a former Bridgwater Town player from the 60's that had passed us by. Thanks to Chris Byrne for giving us the nod... Cheers Chris. See also the reproduction programme page from a few season's ago by Andy Cole (below)...
From The Scotsman - Published on Wednesday 6 June 2012
Queens mourn passing of prolific scorer Black
Queen of the South have announced that their all-time second highest goalscorer Bobby Black passed away on Monday at the age of 85.
Black scored 120 goals in his 346 appearances for the Doonhamers in a nine-year period that began in 1952 after first seeing success on the other side of the country with East Fife. Despite being a Dumfries local and guesting for the Palmerston side during the Second World War, Black joined the Methil side in 1946 and won the League Cup with the Fifers in season 1949-50 when they defeated Dunfermline 3-0.
Black and his team-mates also reached the Scottish Cup final that season against Rangers and finished fourth in the top flight, with that position surpassed two years later in Black's last campaign with the club when they finished third.
In 78 league games for East Fife, Black, who wore the same pair of boots throughout his career, scored 23 goals and his good form continued at the Doonhamers, where he was rewarded with a cap for the Scottish League XI against the League of Ireland XI in Dublin in 1954. He scored twice in a 3-1 victory and after leaving Queens played non-league football for Bath City and Bridgwater Town before settling in Somerset.
Unfortunately, tonight's (29 Aug) Ladies Team game against Cleeve West Town Ladies was postponed due to a wet Fairfax Park pitch - the game will be rearranged in due course.
Meanwhile... due to Bishops Cleeve's FA Cup Preliminary Round tie also being called off tonight and rearranged by The FA for next Tuesday (4 Sept), our scheduled Evo-Stik League Southern Division One South & West against the Bishops on that date has been postponed - again, a date for the rearrangement will be sorted in due course.
Finally... to fill the gap in the fixture list caused by our exit from The FA Cup, the away game against Tiverton Town has been brought forward from Tuesday 23 October to SATURDAY 8 SEPTEMBER - kick off 3pm.
PEARSE HELPS RESERVES OUT WITH A BRACE...
Town Reserves travelled to Ilminster Town tonight (28 Aug) and came away with a point after a 2-2 draw from a game they should really have won.
Dave Pearse (pictured) bagged a brace for Bridgy as he and fellow first-teamers Jake Mawford and Bradley Middleton got a valuable 90 minutes of football under their belts.
More to follow...
Bridgy Team: G Turner, Hembery, L Turner, Middleton, Duffy (sub Reed), Farnham, Mawford, Champion (sub Hilton), Gamblin (sub Devitt), Villis, Pearse.
Bank Holiday Monday Round Up in brief...
Division One South & West - Winchester City, ahead after seven minutes, went to the top of the table with a 2-0 home win over Sholing and Poole Town won 1-0 at home with a first half strike against Wimborne Town while Hungerford Town, trailing after fifteen minutes, scored twice in the final twelve minutes to win 2-1 at Didcot Town. Evesham United scored from the spot in the final minute to grab a point from a 1-1 draw with visiting Merthyr Town and Swindon Supermarine also had to settle for a 1-1 home draw when Cirencester Town equalised two minutes from time but North Leigh, four goals ahead five minutes after the break, scored eight minutes from time to end a spirited fight back from Abingdon United and complete a 5-3 home win. In the day's other game Clevedon Town scored twice in the second half to win 2-0 at Bridgwater Town leaving the home side still looking for their first point.
FOR WEEK ENDING 26 AUGUST....
No report sent last week so no hit counter for week ending 19 Aug as yet...!!!
LADIES START LIFE IN THE PREM WITH A WIN...
Stoke Lane Athletic Ladies 1, Bridgwater Town Ladies 3
Report by Rick Norman
Town Ladies travelled to Almondsbury in Bristol yesterday (Sun 26 Aug) to begin their new adventure in the South West Women’s League Premier Division. Manager Ben Norman described the match as a typical early season encounter that was patchy with both sides making a nervy start.
It was Town that nearly made an early breakthrough when Chelsea Pitt went one on one with the keeper but put her shot wide. However, Town took the lead in the 20th minute when new striker Anusia Rourke latched onto a through ball by Hannah Brown and lobbed the ball over the advancing keeper. Emily Hale and Pitt both missed good chances to increased the lead but Stoke Lane came back and forced Town keeper Fay Edwards to bring off a great save to keep their lead. Just before half-time Town went further ahead when they were awarded a free kick some 30 yards out. Vicky Tindall took the kick and saw it go over the keeper's head straight into the net.
Stoke Lane stated the stronger in the second half and pulled a goal back early on when a Stoke player chased on to a long ball and fired past Edwards. Town came back and Ami Ward had a good shot saved and Russ fired against a post. In the 60th minute Town were awarded a corner which Russ took and centre back Amber Moule headed into the top corner at the back post. Town had several chances to increase their lead, but poor finishing prevented them going further ahead. This was a competitive game to start the season with the defence playing well to keep the Stoke Lane forwards from breaking through.
This Wednesday (29 Aug), Town Ladies have a home fixture at Fairfax Park against Cleeve West Town Ladies - kick-off 7:45 pm. Cleeve lost 9-0 against Frome Town Ladies on Sunday.
Disappointment for Town and McClennan sees red at Larkhall...
Town were knocked out of The FA Cup with Budweiser in the Preliminary Round by Toolstation League champions Larkhall Athletic this afternoon (25 Aug). The Bath based outfit won 3-2 with a late goal to bag the £1750 in prize money.
Town were rocked early on by the sending off of live-wire winger Joe McClennan who was red carded for kicking out at a Larks' defender who had scythed him down with an agricultural challenge leaving Town to play three quarters of the game with ten men.
All the goals came in the final 33 minutes. The home side took the lead on 57 minutes, but Steve Fitzpatrick levelled things up two minutes later. Larkhall took the lead again after 65 minutes, but Jon Vance levelled things once more at 2-2 in the 83rd minute.The Larks hit their winner with three minutes remaining to send the travelling Town fans home heartbroken.
With Clevedon Town avoiding the need for a replay by winning their cup tie at home against Tiverton Town this afternoon, the scheduled Evo-Stik League Southern Division One South & West fixture at Fairfax Park on Monday afternoon will go ahead as planned - 3pm kick off.
Meanwhile.... back at Fairfax Park, in a bad-tempered match, Town Reserves were beaten 3-0 by visiting local rivals Berrow with Tyne Govier seeing red after receiving two cautions in as many minutes during the second period.
Despite losing our opening two league games, the management team are keeping faith in the same squad for tomorrow afternoon's FA Cup with Budweiser Preliminary Round tie away at Larkhall Athletic.
But join manager Kevin Milsom has admitted: "This is a big game for us. And Monday's match at home to Clevedon Town (see below) is massive. We're happy with our squad but, obviously, not with the opening two results."
Bridgwater Town (away v Larkhall Athletic, from): Purnell, Mawford C, McGrath, Legg, Pitcher, Veal P, Mountford, Vance, Mercieca, McClennan, Veal C, MacNab, Pearse, Fitzpatrick, Thomas, Mawford J, Hurley, Simpson.
Please keep an eye on results tomorrow because they could have a bearing on whether there is a game on Monday or not.
If our game at Larkhall, or Clevedon Town’s home tie v Tiverton Town, needs a replay then Monday’s league game will have to be re-arranged. Should a replay against Larkhall be necessary that is scheduled for Tuesday night (7.45pm kick off) as the Bath side wouldn’t agree to play on Monday.
Town are not panicking despite losing both their opening games against Hungerford and Wimborne.
"We could easily have won both matches," said Bridgwater's joint manager Kevin Milsom today (Aug 23). "Both Hungerford and Wimborne beat us with goals in the last few minutes. We scored three goals at Wimborne and still lost. You should never lose a game in which you score three times. We've a very good squad and know it won't be long before we come good."
Midweek Round Up...
Division One South & West
Monday 20th - Hungerford Town, ahead on the
half hour mark, had to settle for a 1-1 home draw when Winchester City equalised
midway through the second half.
Tuesday 21st - Evesham United made it two wins out of two with
a 2-1 victory at Yate Town while Swindon Supermarine completed a 3-1 win at
Abingdon United while Cinderford Town were held to a 1-1 draw at Clevedon Town.
Poole Town also drew 1-1 at Taunton Town but Wimborne Town scored in time added
on to complete a 4-3 home win against Bridgwater Town and Merthyr Town scored in
the final minute to grab a 1-0 home win over Shortwood United. Cirencester Town
lost 3-1 at home to North Leigh but Paulton Rovers completed a 2-1 home victory
over Tiverton Town.
First Team lose to last-gasp goal... but Reserves win...
Bridgwater's first team travelled to Wimborne tonight (21 Aug) and lost to a last minute strike in a seven-goal thriller.
The home side took an early lead but Ross MacNab levelled things up after half an hour. The Magpies regained the lead after 52 minutes before Chris McGrath levelled the scores once more on the hour. Jon Vance then hit the target to put Bridgy ahead for the first time after 67 minutes before two late goals won it for Wimborne with the winner coming three minutes into stoppage time at the end of the game - heartbreaking or what...!!!
Bridgy Team: 1 Nathan Whatley, 2 Craig Mawford, 3 Phil Veal, 4 Chris McGrath, 5 Tim Legg, 6 Jon Vance, 7 Joe McClennan, 8 Kye Mountford, 9 Ross MacNab, 10 Dave Pearse (sub Kye Thomas 82), 11 Graham Mercieca
Meanwhile... The Reserves won 1-0 at home against Watchet Town thanks to a Kenzie Farnham goal 15 minutes from time, and the Under-18 Team beat their Middlezoy Rovers counterparts 4-1 in their latest warm-up game played at Bridgwater College.
Bridgwater Town’s management team have called up goalkeeper Nathan Whatley for tomorrow evening's (Aug 21) away league match against Wimborne Town - although at the time of writing the registration has not gone through.
Whatley, who plays for Bishops Lydeard in the Somerset County League, comes in because Luke Purnell is unavailable and the club's other goalkeeper Stuart Woods is rumoured to have quit after being left out of Saturday's line-up against Hungerford.
Bridgwater Town (away v Wimborne, from): Whatley, Mawford C, McGrath, Legg, Pitcher, Veal P, Mountford, Vance, Merceica, McClennan, Veal C, McNab, Pearse, Fitzpatrick, Thomas, Mawford K, Hurley, Simpson.
Saturday 18 August - Round Up...
Division One South & West - After equalising on the half hour through Luke Hopper, Hungerford Town came back from
a 22nd-minute Ross MacNab goal down to win 2-1 at Bridgwater Town with a goal four minutes from time from substitute Ben Pugh and
Cinderford Town, two ahead at the break, completed a 3-1 home win over Paulton
Rovers while Didcot Town scored a goal in each half to defeat visiting Yate Town
2-0. Evesham United scored on the stroke of half time to record a 1-0 victory
over Sholing to make it a winning start in their new stadium while Cirencester
Town scored three minutes before the break to win 1-0 at Mangotsfield United and
Bishops Cleeve, a goal ahead after eight minutes, won 3-1 at North Leigh. Poole
Town scored a goal in each half to record a 2-0 home win over Clevedon Town
while newly promoted Winchester City made a winning start with a 3-2 home
victory against Taunton Town with four of the goals coming in the final ten
minutes. Newcomers Shortwood United took a point from a 2-2 home draw with
Wimborne Town and Merthyr Town, two ahead mid-way through the second half, also
had to settle for a point when hosts Swindon Supermarine made it 2-2 with five
minutes remaining while Tiverton Town were held to a 0-0 draw at home by
Somerset County League Premier Division - Round Up
On the season's opening Saturday (11 Aug), Langford Rovers were the biggest winners of the afternoon after they beat Odd Down Reserves 5-1 at the Weston-super-Mare Sports Ground, while Stockwood Green were the biggest 'away day' winners beating Ashton & Backwell United 4-2 at The Recreation Ground - a scoreline that was matched at home by promoted side Weston St Johns who beat Bishops Lydeard at Coleridge Road
The other two promoted teams, Street Reserves & Ilminster Town, both started life back in the Premier Division with 3-1 away wins - Street at Clevedon United's Coleridge Vale and Ilminster at St George Easton in Gordano.
Bridgwater Town Reserves were handed one of the toughest opening fixtures they could have been given, an away trip to play Cutters Friday at Stockwood Lane in Bristol. The home side took a first-half lead that was cancelled out by Adam Long midway through the second period. The young Town side competed well overall but were beaten by a late goal by the home side seconds before the final whistle after a lapse in concentration in defence.
West Somerset side Minehead drew 1-all with Shirehampton at Irnham Road, but near neighbours Watchet Town went down 1-0 on the road against Nailsea Town, with the final game of the day ending in a narrow 3-2 win for home side Berrow against Nailsea United at the Red Road Playing Fields.
In the pick of the five games on Tuesday (14 Aug), Cutters Friday and Shirehampton fought out an eleven goal thriller at the Cutters Club with away side Shire eventually coming out on top 6-5, while Odd Down Reserves got over Saturday's 5-1 mauling at the hands of Langford Rovers to beat Nailsea United 2-1 at Combe Hay Lane.
However, there were three teams who made it two wins out of two with Berrow going top of the table after making it a brace of home wins on the bounce with a 3-1 victory over Weston St Johns. Promoted side Street Reserves went second after inflicting St George Easton in Gordano's second home loss in four days with a 3-2 victory, while Nailsea Town won 2-0 on the road at Stockwood Green to go third.
Wednesday night (15 Aug) produced another high scoring game in which the sides shared nine goals. Home side Langford Rovers eventually gained the three points that took them to the top of the table as they edged out Ashton & Backwell United 5-4 at The Weston-super-Mare Sports Ground.
In Wednesday night's other match, Minehead earned their second home 1-1 draw in five days as their encounter with Bridgwater Town Reserves ended all square at Irnham Road. Bridgwater's marksman was Tyne Govier who scored from the penalty spot with 15 minutes remaining levelling things up after the Seasider's had opened the scoring five minutes into the second half. Town's new-look young side again played well - especially in the first 45 minutes - and had chances to win it near the end of the game.
FOR WEKK ENDING 12 AUGUST 2012...
Town's opponents in The FA Cup Preliminary Round will be Larkhall Athletic who beat Willand Rovers 2-1 in the Extra Preliminary Round at Plain Ham yesterday (11th Aug).
Town travel to north-east Bath on Saturday 25th August with a 3pm kick off, and if a replay is needed that will be played at Fairfax Park on Tuesday 28th August with a 7.45pm kick off, which would mean that the scheduled league game versus Clevedon Town on Bank Holiday Monday (27 Aug) would need to be rearranged.
The Larks 'bank' £1,000 in prize money for their win against Willand and there is a further £1,750 at stake for the winners on the 25th.
Town Reserves were given the toughest possible start to their season with an away trip to Bristol to play an uncompromising Cutters Friday side yesterday (11 Aug).
A young Town side played really well but lost out narrowly 2-1 with the home side scoring their winner almost on the final whistle.
Adam Long (pictured) was on target for the Reserves.
Goals from Joe McClennan (first half screamer) and Craig Veal (near the end of the game) gave Bridgy a 2-1 win over Welsh Premier League side Afan Lido this afternoon.
Town team - Stuart Woods, Craig Mawford, Phil Veal, Jon Vance, Mat Pitcher, Tim Legg, Joe McClennan, Kye Mountford, Dave Pearse, Craig Veal, Graham Mercieca - subs all used - Tom Hurley, Kye Thomas, Jake Mawford, Zayne Simpson, Ross MacNab.
FOR WEEK ENDING 05 AUGUST...
Bridgwater Town conclude their pre-season schedule ahead of the start of the Evo-Stik League Southern Division One South & West season which begins on Saturday 18th August with two home games during the coming week.
On Tuesday evening (7 Aug) Hellenic League Division One West outfit Tytherington Rocks visit Fairfax Park with a 7.45pm kick off.
The Bristol-based side comfortably won their division last season, however, they were unable to gain promotion to the Hellenic League Premier Division due to the lack of floodlights at their ground which are an FA requirement for all clubs at Step 5 in the National League System.
Then, on Saturday 11 August, Robins' fans have the chance to see what is being billed as an International Challenge Match when Welsh Premier League side Afan Lido visit Fairfax Park - kick off 3pm.
Admission for both these matches will be £5 for Adults, £3 for Seniors, while Juniors aged 16 and under are FREE.
Ladies Reserves are forced to pull out…
Unfortunately, Ben and Rick Norman have been forced to take the decision to withdraw the Ladies Reserve Team from the Somerset County Women’s League for the coming season. Below is the letter sent to the league today (3 Aug).
We would like to take this opportunity to thank former manager Paul Smith for his hard work and dedication to the team over the past two season and we wish him well for the future.
To: Jo Stimpson (Secretary), Somerset County Women’s League
It is with regret that I have to inform you of the withdrawal of Bridgwater Town Ladies Reserves from the Somerset County Women's League for the coming season 2012/13.
At the end of last season the manager stood down for family reasons and as far as we were aware the assistant manager was going to take over. However, he informed us at the end of June that he was going to manage another team in the Somerset County Women's League.
We have twice placed articles in the Bridgwater Mercury newspaper, and have put requests on social network sites and the main club website for a new manager and players, but no-one has come forward to help.
Coupled with that, only four or five of last year’s Reserves have been attending training recently and taking everything into consideration, we have decided to withdraw from the league this season.
We are sorry for the inconvenience this may cause the League and teams in the Second Division, but we felt it was better to tell you now rather than later.
We hope you understand our position, and we hope that maybe in the future we will once again be able to field a team in the County League.
Bridgwater Town Ladies FC
Town's First Team travelled to Devon to play Cullompton Rangers tonight (02/08) and came away with a 1-all draw with Graham Mercieca scoring for the Robins ten minutes before the half-time interval.
The home side started brightly and caused a few problems early doors. Their efforts were rewarded after ten minutes when a needlessly given away free kick 20 yards out on the right of the penalty area was superbly lofted into the far corner just evading the outstretched fingers of Stuart Wood in the Town goal.
This stung Town into action and as the half progressed the more they got on top.
However, as at Malmesbury a couple of weeks ago, the timing of the runs from Town's front men wasn't quite there and all too often the home side were saved by the assistant referee's raised flag.
The scores were levelled after 35 minutes when a fine lay-back by Phil Veal was smashed right through the back of the net by Mercieca.
The second period followed a similar pattern to the first with the home side having the better of the early exchanges and Town getting on top as the half progressed without finding the vital touch in front of goal.
The returning Mat Pitcher - and everyone else - thought he had won it for Town late in the game when he found the back of the net with a header during a goalmouth scramble, but the referee had other ideas and gave a free kick for an alleged push somewhere in the penalty area.
In all, this was a good workout for Town, but the management team will, no doubt, feel a little disappointed that they couldn't claim the win after having the better of things overall.
Town: Stuart Wood, Phil Veal, Kye Thomas, Jake Mawford, Chris McGrath, Mat Pitcher, Graham Mercieca, Kye Mountford, Dave Pearse, Tom Hurley, Zayne Simpson - used subs; Joe McClennan, Ollie Chamberlain, Craig Veal.
PS: Must give a mention to the 30-yard thunderbolt from Chris McGrath five minutes from time that left the Cullompton crossbar shaking until the end of the game - maybe a slight exaggeration, but he did hit it with some venom...!!!
Town gained a 3-0 home win over Toolstation League side Wellington in a pre-season friendly tonight (July31).
Bridgwater, who have signed a number of new players, won with goals by Craig Veal (first half penalty), Joe McClennan and a 25-yard screamer from Steve Fitzpatrick.
Town's First Team are in action again this week with a trip to Cullompton Rangers on Thursday evening with a 7.45pm kick off, while the Reserves are at home against Middlezoy Rovers on Friday evening - also 7.45pm kick off.
BTFC 28th AGM notification....
FOR WEEK ENDING 29 JULY 2012...
The draw for the Preliminary and First Rounds of the Red Insure Cup (Southern League Cup) have been released by the league.
There are only two ties in the Preliminary Round and Aylesbury will face Barton Rovers on 26 September and Bishops Cleeve will meet Evesham United the following night.
Bridgwater Town have been drawn at Home against Bideford in the First Round with the game scheduled for Tuesday 16 October 2012 (KO 7.45pm) which will see former manager Rob Dray return to Fairfax Park for the first time in his new role as Assistant Manager at the north Devon side.
Other ties in Round 1 that feature local(ish) sides to be played Tue 16/10 are... Chippenham Town v Paulton Rovers - Frome Town v Cirencester Town (Wed 17/10) - Mangotsfield United v Clevedon Town - Merthyr Town v Yate Town - Tiverton Town v Taunton Town
Round 2 is scheduled for week beginning 19 November 2012.
There is no prize money available in the competition until teams reach the semi-final stage.
LATEST SQUAD NEWS...
After a month or so of pre-season training and a couple of friendly games under their belts, Town's management team of Kevin Milsom, Dave Pople & Paul West have begun the delicate task of negotiating with players with a view to playing for 'The Robins' during the coming season.
To date, fourteen players have agreed terms and have 'put pen to paper' on Evo-Stik League Southern forms.
Luke Purnell, who ended last season between the sticks at Fairfax Park, is staying, while Stuart Wood returns from Hungerford Town to add competition for the No.1 jersey, with live-wire Joe McClennan also joining from the Berkshire side.
Last season's top goalscorer Dave Pearse will again be fighting for the Robins' cause, as is Bradley Middleton and youngster Tom Hurley, while Graham Mercieca returns after a brief sojourn at Taunton Town at the end of last season.
Paul West's influence has, no doubt, been a key factor in Ollie Chamberlain, Tim Legg, Ross MacNab, Chris McGrath and the Veal brothers Craig & Phillip deciding to follow their former boss the short distance up the A38 (or M5) from Wordsworth Drive to Fairfax Park.
The final new recruit at present, Kye Mountford, joins from Toolstation Western League side Bristol Manor Farm - but there are more signings on the cards once holidays and other commitments are out of the way.
We say a hearty "WELCOME" to all the new recruits and "WELCOME BACK" to those were here last season - "HAVE A GREAT SEASON ONE AND ALL"...!!!
FOR WEEK ENDING 22 JULY 2012...
Thanks to Chris Anderson for this update...
Bridgwater Town Ladies are now well into their pre-season training and things are looking good. One or two new faces are exciting additions to what is already a strong squad who are looking forward to a new life in the very high standard South West Women's Premier League.
The Ladies First Team are shortly to welcome West Bromich Albion to Fairfax Park on 29th July (2pm) with Ben and Chris naming an 18-strong squad for this very exiting game shortly. The team extend a warm welcome to all to the game with free admission...when else will you see a fixture advertised...Bridgwater Town FC v West Bromich Albion - Fairfax Park...unless... (come on Millie, Buzz and Co. let's have a FA Cup run this year !!!)
The girls are looking forward to the new season having already won games last season against teams such as Cheltenham, Cleeve West Town and Downend who will also feature in the Premier League this coming year.
The is no doubt that this will however be a testing season for the team - but rest assured the team will be up for what will be another exiting year for the Bridgwater Town Ladies First Team.
The Evo-Stik League Southern fixtures have been released to clubs and you can find ours on the Notice Board on the home page.
This has now been up-dated with our cup game opponents included...
One game to re-arrange already... Merthyr Town at home on Tuesday 6 November due to a clash with the home game v Portishead in the Somerset FA Premier Cup that night which takes priority. The new date for the Merthyr game will be posted asap...
Merthyr Town Home now Tuesday 13 November 2012 - KO 7.45pm
Town kick off their pre-season schedule tonight (17/07) and joint manager Kevin Milsom has said fans can be excited with a few new faces at the club.
Milsom told the Bridgwater Mercury he doesn't want to "let the cat out of the bag" by naming players at this stage but did reveal the type of players they had attracted.
He said: "There are some exciting names who have come in; we have attracted a couple of strikers and a couple of wide men who will play in preseason. I do not want to say too much as other clubs may come in for them."
Fixtures for the forthcoming season are released tomorrow (Wednesday) and Milsom believes the team is capable of a play-off finish.
He said: "There is a lot of enthusiasm within the management and the players and we are feeling really positive. We are thinking that the quality players we have brought in could see us near the play-offs - that's the aim. The club has had a couple of seasons where we have stepped back and let things pan out but, with some new blood on board, I think we've got a good chance this season."
Milsom said he and the management team will assess the tactics of the team after the first three pre-season games.
The first team squad travel to Malmesbury Victoria near Cirencester tonight for a 7.45pm kick off and then, on Saturday, the Reserve team face Dorset League side Mere Town away - 3pm kick off.
Admission Prices for the forthcoming pre-season games at Fairfax Park will be...
The games against Buckland Athletic (24/07), Wellington (31/07), Tytherington Rocks (07/08) & Afan Lido (11/08) - ADULT £5, SENIORS £4 and CHILDREN 16 & UNDER FREE
The game against Middlezoy Rovers (03/08) - ADULT £3, SENIORS £2 and CHILDREN 16 & UNDER FREE
The Ladies Team game against WEST BROMWICH ALBION (29/07) is FREE FOR EVERYONE - although our Beryl will no doubt 'encourage' everyone to have a go on her raffle...!!!
FOR WEEK ENDING 15 JULY 2012...
Chelsea Pitt picks up League’s ‘Top Goalscorer Award‘…
Chelsea picked up her league ‘Top Goalscorer' Trophy recently for her haul of 23 goals in the 2011/12 South West Women’s League season.
Chelsea, in her first year at this level, took to her task as talismanic striker with ease as she chalked up 31 goals in all competitions. Chelsea revelled in her first venture into the FA Women’s Cup, bagging 4 goals in Bridgwater Town's three games last term.
Chelsea has taken a lot of the plaudits this season, but much of the credit must also go to the rest of the squad who have worked tirelessly throughout the season to create chances and chip in with vital goals.
Despite leaving for university in September, Chelsea will remain part of the 2012/13 squad and will play in a number of fixtures in the new season.
First Team Joint Manager Dave Pople has added another game to the pre-season schedule - Wellington will visit Fairfax Park on Tuesday 31 July with a 7.45pm kick off.
The full list of pre-season games can be found on the home page 'Notice Board'....!!!
The 2012/13 fixtures for the three division of the Evo-Stik League Southern will not now be released on Friday 13th July as previously advised, due to an unfortunate family bereavement concerning the fixture compiler.
The release date will instead be on Wednesday 18th July.
FOR WEEK ENDING 08 JULY 2012...
The draws for the early rounds of the coming season's FA Competitions were released earlier today.
In The FA Cup with Budweiser, Town face an away trip to either Larkhall Athletic or Willand Rovers in the Preliminary Round on Saturday 25th August with £1750 prize money at stake. The winners will then face a home tie against Frome Town two weeks later in the First Round Qualifying with £3000 prize money at stake in that game.
In The FA Carlsberg Trophy, it's away again in the Preliminary Round with a trip to divisional rivals Abingdon United on Saturday 15th September (with £2300 prize money at stake), followed by, a fortnight later, a home tie against Hemel Hempstead Town (and a prize pot of £2550) for the winners.
Town's Under-18's have received a bye in the Preliminary Round of The FA Youth Cup and will face Merthyr Town U18's at Fairfax Park in week commencing 17th September. There is no prize money whatsoever in this competition - even for the eventual winners.
Please see the pre-seaon fixtures' list on the notice board on the home page for the up-to-date schedule...
It is with great sadness the Football Club have been informed that popular and well respected former player, trainer and coach Merv (Kite) Elliott passed away aged 80 years yesterday after a period of illness. Details of the funeral arrangements will be posted as soon as available.
'Kite' was involved with the Club for many, many years as a Goalkeeper of some repute and renowned for his hard work in other capacities beyond his playing career. He remained an avid supporter.
For week ending 01 July 2012...
Official Club Statement...
Bridgwater Town have confirmed the appointment of Paul West (pictured) as Assistant Manager. Paul will work with management duo Kevin Milsom and Dave Pople on first team affairs and brings an additional dimension to help take the club forward. Westy former Taunton Town Manager brings a wealth of experience at Southern League level as well as wide football knowledge and tremendous enthusiasm for the game. He is renowned for his commitment and will to win. Paul is also a former Bridgwater player as are Millie and Buzz.
Pre-season training - Begins TUESDAY 3 JULY 2012 at 7pm at Fairfax Park - ALL PLAYERS and prospective players WELCOME - come along and give it a go
Former Taunton Town boss Paul West has joined Evo-Stik Southern League rivals Bridgwater Town as assistant manager.
West, sacked by Taunton last month, will work alongside joint managers Dave Pople and Kevin Milsom who were themselves only appointed recently.
"We're delighted to have Paul on board," said Bridgwater's chairman Alan Hurford last night. "He comes to Bridgwater with a wealth of footballing experience and know-how."
The news of West's appointment ends speculation about his future.
Taunton's decision to axe West has upset the former FA Trophy*-winning captain.
"I was disgusted with the way I was treated by certain individuals at the club and I won't forget it," said West.
"I have been associated with the club for 29 years and it really hurts.
"As far as I was concerned I was building a club at Taunton and thought I had the safest job in football."
A number of players from Taunton are expected to follow West to Bridgwater.
*Please Note - a slight correction to the Sportsouthwest.co.uk report above - Paul was an FA VASE- winning captain not FA Trophy - thanks for spotting that mistake Kerry Miller...!!!
Bridgwater Town Ladies First Team look forward to a few more local(ish) games during the coming season following their promotion to the Premier Division of the South West Women's League.
They will once again lock horns with Downend Flyers who finished as Champions of the Eastern Division ahead of Town last term - although Ben Norman's side had the distinction of being the only team to beat the north-east Bristol outfit during the season - a 5-1 win at Fairfax Park near the beginning of the campaign.
Town Ladies also face trips to the Bristol area to play Bristol Ladies Union, Stoke Lane Athletic and Cleeve West Town, while journeys to Frome Town and Larkhall Athletic aren't all that far.
The team face a couple of treks westward to play Stoke Gabriel and Plymstock United Ladies in Devon and a trip to south Dorset sees them meet Weymouth LFC, with their final opponent being Gloucestershire side Cheltenham Town Ladies - who they beat 3-0 away in the FA Women's Cup last season.
At the time of writing the constitution of the Somerset County Women's League hasn't been made available so we await news of the Ladies Reserve Team's opponents for the 2012-13 season - over to you Rick (or Ben) - info PLEASE...!!!
Another pre-season game has been added to the schedule with Joint Manager Dave 'Buzz' Pople arranging for Toolstation League Premier Division new boys Buckland Athletic to visit Fairfax Park on Tuesday 24th July with a 7.45pm kick off.
This means that 'Town' will be fielding two strong sides that night as the previously announced away game at Slimbridge will still take place as this will give the new management team the opportunity of looking at the merits of more players early on.
Another game has been added to the pre-season programme for the First Team - Saturday 11th August - 3pm kick off - at Fairfax Park versus Welsh Premier League side AFAN LIDO.
FOR WEEK ENDING 24TH JUNE 2012...
Somerset FA Premier Cup Competition 2012-2013
The First and Second Round draws for the 2012-13 Somerset FA Premier Cup Competition have been released. There is a new team in this year's competition, Cheddar, following their elevation to the Western League; we welcome them to the competition and wish them every success in the coming years. The only other change to last year is that Bristol Manor Farm have not entered the competition this season, therefore we once again have 23 entrants which will give 7 first round fixtures and 9 teams with byes to round 2
FIRST ROUND - Ties to be played week commencing 1st October 2012
Larkhall Athletic v Keynsham Town
Frome Town v Chard Town
Shepton Mallet v Hengrove Athletic
Paulton Rovers v Clevedon Town
Weston Super Mare v Street
Bishop Sutton v Radstock Town
Welton Rovers v Odd Down
Byes: Bath City, Bridgwater Town, Brislington, Cheddar, Portishead Town, Taunton Town, Wellington, Wells City, Yeovil Town
SECOND ROUND - Ties to be played week commencing 5th November 2012
BRIDGWATER TOWN V PORTISHEAD TOWN
Wellington v Bath City
Taunton Town v Brislington
Bishop Sutton or Radstock Town v Yeovil Town
Paulton Rovers or Clevedon Town v Wells City
Larkhall Athletic or Keynsham Town v Cheddar
Welton Rovers or Odd Down v Shepton Mallet or Hengrove Athletic
Weston Super Mare or Street v Frome Town or Chard Town
For information, the reserve dates of the other rounds are as follows:
Quarter Finals - Week commencing 25th February 2013
Semi Finals - Week commencing 8th April 2013
Final - To be confirmed
The draws were made using the CAS Computer system.
For week ending 17th June 2012...
For week ending 10th June 2012
|Leigh Joins Taunton|
Former Bridgwater Town joint-manager, Leigh Robinson (pictured left), has been unveiled as the new manager of Taunton Town.
Leigh was in charge alongside former manager Craig Laird during the 2009-10 season, in which he helped Town to their most successful ever season, finishing 3rd in the league and coming runners-up in both the play-offs and the Somerset Premier Cup, losing to Cirencester Town and Welton Rovers respectively.
We wish Leigh all the best in his new venture to "that club down the road"!
Taunton Town's new manager Leigh Robinson says he cannot wait to start his new job with the Evo-Stik Southern League club. Robinson was selected from a shortlist of five applicants by the club's full board over the weekend and he is planning to speak to members of last season's squad "as soon as possible."
Robinson said today (June 11): "I am delighted to have the chance to manage Taunton Town. I have huge respect for the work that Paul West (previous manager) did at the club under difficult circumstances and hope to build on the excellent foundations that he has put in place. Having spoken to the chairman and directors at length, I have been very impressed by the ambitions of the club and the determination that they have to drive the club forward. I am confident we are all singing off the same hymn sheet in terms of our ambitions for Taunton and I will be working hard to achieve this for the players, supporters and the people who run the club."
The appointment of Robinson has been welcomed by the club's chairman and chief executive Kevin Sturmey who said: "I'm delighted Leigh has accepted the role as first team manager. He has had success at our level, has come highly recommended by many people and has a clear outlook on how to manage in the Evo-Stik League. He impressed the board with his plans and has good contacts in the game, as well as being a decision maker who will be ruthless if necessary. We will be spending as much time as it takes to formulate plans to create a successful structure and fine tune our draft four-year football plan as soon as possible. Leigh realises we are in the results business and building the club with the right people will increase our chances of success if everyone shares the same common goal."
Update on our good friend BRIAN AUSTEN...
Everyone at BTFC wishes Brian (BA) "All The Best" as his recovery continues after his heart attack last year. He has recently moved from Musgrove Park Hospital where he has been for the past few months and is now in different surroundings at the MANOR CARE HOME in Bishops Hull where he has his own room with TV so he can keep up to date with what's going on in the big wide world.
Visitors are very much welcomed and BA and his family would be happy to see anyone who is in the area that can spare a couple of minutes for a chat etc. There are no set visiting times but a quick phone call (number below) is advised to make sure BA is 'receiving guests' and not undergoing physiotherapy or the like.
Manor Care Home - Hayden Close, Bishops Hull, Taunton - Tel: 01823 336633
Pre-season games arranged so far…
Thursday 05 July - Reserves v Bristol Academy (@ B/W College)
Tuesday 17 July - First Team v Malmesbury Victoria (Away) 7.45pm
Saturday 21 July - Reserves v Mere Town (venue TBA)
Tuesday 24 July - First Team v Slimbridge (Away) 7.45pm
Sunday 29 July - Ladies Team v West Bromwich Albion Ladies (Home) 2pm
Saturday 04 August - First Team v Winterborne United (Away) 3pm
Wednesday 08 August - First Team v Tytherington Rocks (Home) 7.45pm
Somerset County League begins Saturday 11 August.
Evo-Stik League Southern begins Saturday 18 August.
The FA have announced the proposed club allocations for Steps 1-4 for season 2012-13 (version 2)...
We have a few new clubs to visit (including 2 re-visits!!) while two teams have been moved sideways - Halesowen Town have been transferred to the Northern Premier League Div 1 South while Thatcham Town move to the Southern League Div 1 Central. Things may still change though due to Bedfont Town resigning from the National League System.
Friday night (18 May) saw the 28th Annual BTFC Awards (for season 2011-12) take place in the Robins Club at Fairfax Park. Several of the award winners are pictured here - but a huge "Well Done" must go to all the winners after what is probably best described as another difficult season for the Club...
Full list of winners are...
Clubman of the Year - Roger Palmer
Ladies Plate -Glenda Fletcher
Loyalty Cup - Dave Lukins
Maurice Puddy Cup (Team Trophy) - Men's Reserve Team
Sportsman of the Year - Dave Pearse
Young Robin - Tom Hurley
Most Improved Player - Craig Mawford
Supporters' Player of the Season - Dave Pearse
Supporters' Shield - Mat Pitcher
Players' Player - Neil Peek
New Player - Ollie Barnes
Goal of the Season - Matt Townley (Cinderford Town 23-08-2011)
Players' Player - Kenzie Farnham
Young Player - Callum Kennelly
Goal of the Season - Connor Watts (Clevedon United 21-02-2012)
Player of the Season - TBA
Players' Player - TBA
Ladies First Team
Player of the Season - Chelsea Pitt
Players' Player - Amber Moule
Ladies Reserve Team
Player of the Season - Chloe Stringer
Players' Player - Farran Stewart
Charter Standard League Award…
The Evo-Stik League Southern has become the highest ranked League in the National Leagues System to celebrate being awarded the prestigious Charter Standard League Award. The Award was presented by FA Chairman, David Bernstein, at Wembley prior to the FA Trophy Final to League Chairman Ken Turner and Development Director Brian McCarthy accompanied by Kevin England of the Bedfordshire FA.
The relatively new concept of Charter Standard Leagues works in exactly the same way as the earlier developed Charter Standard Club Award. The award is a flagship initiative awarded by The FA and assesses the ability of a League to provide a high quality, safe and enjoyable football experience against a standard set of criteria. It also encourages the League to continually develop, giving direction and purpose through a carefully written and robust Development Plan. The development plan allows the League and its officers to work closely in initiatives that will hopefully improve the football experience for all in which the League’s member clubs operate.
League Chairman Ken Turner commented, “I am delighted that the Southern League has achieved The FA Charter Standard League award. This is a great testament to the hard work of those member clubs that have achieved the Charter Standard status and above and more importantly underlines the commitment of clubs to develop all levels of football within their communities. We are indebted to Kevin England who has worked closely with Brian McCarthy over the past eighteen months through the various stages and processes necessary for the League to qualify for the Award. We fully appreciate, however, that this is only the start and the League’s Board is fully committed to continue on the path to maintain the status we have worked so hard to achieve.”
Kevin England added, “As a Step 3 League the 65 Clubs within the League are spread over 3 Divisions and 17 Counties and it has been a mammoth task initially to meet the criteria for the award. Having achieved the status for the League we now aim for one hundred percent of Clubs to hold Charter Standard status and delivery of the League’s Development Plan with support of the FA and Counties across the League.”
Pictured - Left to right: Ken Turner (League Chairman), David Bernstein (FA Chairman), Brian McCarthy (Development Director), and Kevin England (Bedfordshire FA)
Bridgwater Town Football Club are delighted to confirm the appointment of Kevin Milsom and Dave Pople as JOINT MANAGERS to take the club forward into 2012/13. This follows an encouraging end to the season under Millie's stewardship after the departure of Rob Dray with vastly improved confidence and enthusiasm evident in all aspects of the club on and off the field.
The two will work in partnership contrary to the recent regional media press stories which were patently incorrect. Further discussions have evolved the joint partnership working arrangements to prepare for a job which at the levels the club plays at can no longer be seen as a role for one person - that is the club's firmly held view. We believe the skills and experience which Millie and Buzz, both former players, and therefore completely familiar with the ethic, aims and desires of the club and supporters, bring to the table will complement each other - most notably experience at current SL level and management experience and contacts locally.
We look forward to moving forward. Luke Buckingham and Rob Snook will continue the excellent work progressed this season with the Reserves and Lloyd Dean with the U/18's to continue to give promising younger players the opportunity to make the grade in the traditional BTFC way.
Goals by Vicky Tindall, Chelsea Pitt and Charlotte Barnes earned Town Ladies First Team a hard-fought 3-2 home win over Cleeve West Town at Bridgwater College this afternoon (13 May). The win takes them above their opponents into second place and confirms a second successive promotion for manager Ben Norman's side.
BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 3, CLEEVE WEST TOWN LADIES 2
Town Ladies clinched promotion to the South West Women’s League Premier Division at the first attempt after this top of the table battle with Cleeve who had started the day with a plus-one better goal difference in second place with Town one point behind them in third - albeit with a game in hand.
The two teams went into the match knowing that it was virtually a ‘Winner-takes-all’ situation to clinch the runners-up spot behind the Champions Downend Flyers and it was the visitors who started the game the better as they put Town onto the back foot in the early exchanges.
However, Town started to get a foothold in the game and went ahead after 8 minutes when a long cross from the left was headed down by Gemma Baker to Vicky Tindall who stuck the ball hard and low into the far corner.
Both teams continued to be very competitive and created several chances with the home side's Baker and Chelsea Pitt going close, but they were unable to increase the lead and half time arrived with Town holding a slender 1-0 advantage.
Town started the second period strongly and they went further ahead in the 51st minute after a ball over the top saw Baker put pressure on the Cleeve defence which caused an under-hit back-pass that Pitt latched onto before calmly sliding the ball past the Cleeve keeper into the net.
Unfortunately, the visitors got back into the game two minutes later when an uncharacteristic slip by Hannah Brown allowed a Cleeve forward through and she finished with a lofted shot over Town ‘keeper Fay Edwards.
This put Town on the back foot again for a while and Cleeve threatened to take control, but Town fought back and gradually regained the initiative and created several chances.
As the game progressed it became a real ‘edge of your seat’ thriller with both sides going close. But in the 84th minute Town seemed to have won it after a spell of pressure led to Charlotte Barnes powerfully headed home a corner by Russ to make it 3-1.
However, Town went to sleep and almost immediately Cleeve struck back to make it 3-2 when a free kick from the left was not cleared and from the resultant scramble they forced the ball home.
This set up a very nervy last few minutes, but it was Town who nearly increased their lead when a firmly hit shot by Russ was well saved by the Cleeve keeper.
The final whistle brought about scenes of unbridled joy by the Town players and Management in contrast to tears from the Cleeve players.
This was the culmination of a very good season and has resulted in the second successive promotion for the Town Ladies. All credit must go to the players and manager Ben Norman for a fantastic achievement and to everyone behind the scenes who have helped and supported the Club.
Town finish their fixtures next Sunday (20 May) when they travel to Bristol to take on Champions Downend Flyers, who incidentally have only been beaten once this season, by Town 5-1 at Fairfax Park at the beginning of the campaign.
Earlier today (12 May) the final set of new lights were fitted (pictured left) by the boys from Musco Lighting, and a short time afterwards 16 extra 'Suns' (pictured right) were shining down brightly on the playing surface at Fairfax Park helping the re-seeded pitch to grow - We can't wait until it's dark later on to see how they look at night...!!!
The cost of the upgrade of the lights has been £20,000 plus VAT - which was funded by the club with grant aid from Bridgwater Town Council, Sedgemoor District Council and The FA's Football Stadium Improvement Fund.
Despite a few problems caused by the wet weather - getting the cherry-picker stuck in the mud...
FINAL DAY ROUND UP...
Division One South & West champions Bideford slipped to a 3-1 defeat at Poole Town on the final day. It was only Bideford’s fourth league loss as Poole secured second place. The Robins fell behind to a 7th minute strike from Dan Cann. Sean Downing closed down a defender and created the opening for Steve Orchard to fire the equaliser. But the hosts went ahead again through Carl Preston on the stroke of half time and they sealed the win in the last 5 minutes with an own goal from Richard Groves.
Gosport Borough finished third after a 2-1 win over Bishops Cleeve at Privett Park. That means Alex Pike’s men will host Sholing in the play-offs on Monday night. Boro were hoping to secure second spot and a home tie throughout the play-offs. But Poole’s victory over Bideford put pay to that. Gosport can still take plenty of confidence into Monday’s match, though, as goals from Justin Bennett on the hour-mark and Adam Wilde from the spot 15 minutes from time handed them three points.
A strong second half performance saw Yate Town come from behind to earn a point against promotion-chasing Sholing. Going into the game on the back of four straight defeats, it looked as though the Bluebells were going to finish their campaign with a whimper when Sholing went into the half-time break 1-0 up, courtesy of Lewis Fennemore, but Tom Knighton levelled the scores from the penalty spot on 66 minutes after he was brought down when through on goal by Lee Bright, who was lucky to escape with a yellow card. The visitors were reduced to ten-men 9 minutes later when Marc Diaper was sent-off for elbowing Harley Purnell, but Yate were unable to take advantage and they had to settle for a draw.
Hungerford, already assured of the final play-off place, conceded four goals in the first half to North Leigh and crashed to a 6-3 home defeat. Stuart Hole bagged a brace for the visitors.
Thatcham finish the season in eighth place following a 3-2 win at home to Wimborne Town. The opening goal arrived after 27 minutes when Tom Melledew’s pile-driver was pushed away by the keeper and Clark was first to the ball and centred for Rees to convert. The Kingfishers began the second half well and scored a second on 49 minutes when James headed home Tom Browne’s free-kick. Thatcham added a third on 76 minutes, Carl Self raced on to Browne’s ball up the left channel and centred perfectly for Johnson to glance a header across goal and in. Wimborne hadn’t threatened much in the second half but pulled two goals back late in the game. On 85 minutes Jamie Davidson converted Webb’s cross whilst on 90 minutes a left-wing cross from Blake appeared to deflect in off a Thatcham defender, leaving Howe helpless.
Tiverton Town were held to a goalless home draw by Abingdon United, while Cinderford Town scored a goal in each half through a Matt Thorne own goal and Danny Haines to win 2-0 at Clevedon Town.
Halesowen Town lost 1-0 at home when Taunton Town scored midway through the first half through Rodney Marsh, and Mangotsfield United lost 2-1 at bottom of the table Stourport Swifts, for whom Calvin Dinsley and Louis Bridges were on target.
And finally, Bridgwater Town scored through Neil Peek with 5 minutes remaining to complete a 3-2 home win over Didcot Town, whose Harry Halls had scored twice.
After Saturday‘s home victory over Wimborne Town, Thatcham Town manager Gary Ackling and his assistant Jason Braidwood tendered their resignation which was reluctantly accepted by the Committee. The Committee of the club would like to put on record their thanks to Gary Ackling and Jason Braidwood for all their hard work and dedication over the past few seasons and wish them all the best and thanks.
Saturday also saw Richard Fox’s last game as sports therapist at the club he has now retired, again everyone at the club wishes to thank the ever popular Doctor Fox for all his efforts around the club.
GOOD JOB THIS WASN'T YESTERDAY it's probably safe to say that, unfortunately, the re-arranged Ladies Team game against Cleeve West Town this morning and the Andrew 'Parks' Parker memorial Match this afternoon at Fairfax Park will be off.
This Afternoon's Preview...
Town have re-called Neil Peek and Josh Turner for today's (28 Apr) last game of the season in Division One South and West of the Evo-Stik League Southern at home to Didcot Town (3pm). Both missed the 2-0 defeat at Abingdon last weekend because they were holidaying in Spain. Manager Kevin Milsom has called for a good display from his side "so supporters are encouraged to come back next season."
Don't forget; admission is FREE for the game this afternoon with the voucher printed in our last match programme or this week's Bridgwater Mercury....
Bridgwater Town (from): Purnell, C Mawford, Pitcher, Middleton, Barnes, J Mawford, Peek, Turner, Wring, Monks, Hurley, Pearse, Irish, Long, Villis, Watts, Champion, Farnham.
Millie's Notes from today's Match Programme...
"Good afternoon" to you all on what is our last game of the season. It's been a difficult but most enjoyable few week which has seen us play some good football and get some decent results with some very promising performances by the young lads that have been brought in. Let's hope we can put in another good display and get a win which will in turn send everyone home happy and looking forward to coming back pre-season when we can all start afresh.
On a personal note I would like to say a big "Thank You" to you all for your wonderful support - it's been really appreciated and I hope you have enjoyed the football I want the team to play. And lastly a big "Thank You" to the chairman and fellow committee member of giving me the opportunity, not just to manage at Southern League level, but at this wonderful club, and whatever happens in the summer, I wish you all the best and enjoy your football ...Millie
Good day ALL to what is the last game of yet another season that has flown by and left much in it's wake. Possibly even more than many others gone by it seems. Following such a difficult transition year it promised so much early doors - especially pre-season - but then reality struck and results showed where we deserved to be. Then an autumnal awakening and a run as good as any since our elevation to this grade, and played with some style. But then, for whatever reason not only I will never know, we hit the downhill and it took everything to the point of something to be done. It was, and we are now where we are with a new ballgame and renewed interest and spirit on and off the park. So is this another renaissance; only time will tell - but there are those determined to make it so.
It goes without saying there is a price, but even within the price I and we all acknowledge what Robert did, the effort and energy he put into it - alas it was destined not to be. Well my friend, whatever, the best from here. Onwards: Millie has galvanised and organised. Much to do but signs of effect on and around the place, and what may follow possibly may bring the green shoots traditionally our way of making it to this level and upwards. To those who have stuck with the proof of metal on the field thanks.
Alongside that, after a difficult start Rob and Luke have brought back the pride in the younger representatives of this football club with some outstanding results and Millie has not been afraid to promote - added bonus. U/18s sometimes undistinguishable from the Reserves or the other way round, have also shown their worth. Do not forget the Ladies who continue to prosper under the guiding hand of Ben and others to numerous to mention both first and second teams. And they all support events in the club; something for others to note. Make a note all Presentation Night this year at the Clubhouse on May 18th.
So moving on the usual thanks to all who work so hard for the continued good of this club and it is a club never forget it. Every bit of the well oiled machine plays a part and from pitch to tea hut to Robins Club to club shop to stewards and gaters. Special note to R t R now printer as well as Editor of this epistle alongside all else he does and Winston 'Meeter & Greeter' and travel organiser - thanks for your support as VC. Sponsorship still so critical to ongoing revenue from TMB, Johnsons Metals, SFF, match, programme, advert boards you name it it's part of it as is our special relationship with the College.
Finally our thanks today to EDF. Ironically our visitors - welcome - play next to a power producer in the n-power Stadium - now there is the germ of an idea ! So is this a swan song after eight or so years in the job. Time will tell but what we do do is continue to stride forward giving entertainment and opportunity to every interest in this football club.
Hurf (nee ERGM) - Call me Et Al
NORTH LEIGH GROUND RANSACKED…
We’ve had our fair share of this in the past so we know how our friends at North Leigh feel…
Burglars ransacked Evo-Stik League Southern Division One South & West club North Leigh`s Eynsham Park ground, causing £7,000 of damage by leaving beer pumps running, breaking windows and snatching TVs, alcohol and food.
North Leigh had won the Oxfordshire Senior Cup just days before the raid on Saturday night.
The club has now had to cancel two fixtures as it sets about repairing damage to the clubhouse and pavilion at Eynsham Park.
Club treasurer Stacey McDonough said: “They got in through a window, cutting the padlock and smashed the place up and stole three TVs. They broke into the pavilion, changing rooms and a staff member’s car, smashed that up too.
“They stole alcohol from behind the bar and they left the beer pumps on, so the beer has run out and damaged the floor.
“It’s going to cost thousands to put right. I don’t want to sound melodramatic but it will probably cost about £7,000.
“The main gate wasn’t open and we think they must have come in by foot.
“We’re absolutely gutted. All we try to do is provide a lovely facility to play football in and someone has decided they don’t like it.
“It’s not the first time – all the copper pipe from the changing rooms was stolen before Christmas.”
Fred Ford Cup and Supplementary Cup games at the club will not be held on Wednesday and Thursday nights. But the club is determined the clean-up will allow it to host an Oxford Charity Cup fixture on Saturday.
|Picture courtesy Andy Slocombe|
Nailsea United Ladies 2, BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 3
(Report by Rick Norman)...
Town Ladies moved to within a point of second placed Cleeve West Town with this hard-fought away victory against Nailsea at The Grove Sports Centre on Sunday afternoon (22 Apr).
The first half was dominated by Town, but they failed to convert several chances that fell their way and the half-time interval was reached goalless.
The manager's team-talk during the break seemed to work wonders as Town soon found their touch in the second period and it wasn't long before a long pass from Vicky Tindall was met by Charlotte Barnes, who laid the ball off to Gemma Baker (pictured) to make no mistake from five yards out to open the scoring.
Moments later Town went further ahead when Anneka Russ converted another Tindall cross, and at this point Town were well in control.
However, on the hour mark the home side were awarded a free kick some 25 yards out which was beautifully struck into the top corner giving Fay Edwards in the Town goal no chance which brought them back into the game, and a short while later Edwards was adjudged to have brought down a Nailsea forward in the penalty area - for which she received a yellow card - and the spot kick was duly despatched which brought the game back level at 2-2.
Town didn't panic and restored their lead in the 75th minute when Baker grabbed her second goal of the game when she headed home a cross by Russ from ten yards out.
The Town Ladies continued to press and had a couple of further chances cleared of the line, while a fine effort from Russ hit the crossbar.
This was a vital win and sets up a special evening game this Wednesday (25 Apr) at Fairfax Park - weather permitting - when the Ladies are at home to Cleeve West Town, kick-off 7.45pm (changed from 7.30pm). A win for Town would confirm second place. All support would be very welcome.
Saturday's Round-up... (21-04)...
Division One South & West champions Bideford completed an unbeaten season at home with a second half winner from Matt Hockley on Saturday against Hungerford Town. There was a party atmosphere at the Sports Ground as Hockley, the captain, was presented with the trophy after the game. His goal from the penalty spot 15 minutes from time after a surging run by Sean Downing was ended by a trip from a Hungerford defender, ensured the Robins finished on a high.
Despite the defeat, Hungerford clinched the final play-off place when North Leigh lost 2-1 at home to Poole Town, who moved into second place when Gosport Borough could only draw 1-1 away from home against Mangotsfield United.
Carl Preston gave the Dolphins a 10th minute lead that Alex Baldacchino doubled in the 28th minute. Stuart Hole pulled one back for the Oxfordshire outfit 2 minutes from time from the penalty spot, but it wasn’t enough.
A late Mangotsfield equaliser meant Gosport were forced to settle for a 1-1 draw and third spot. Boro made the trip to Cossham Street looking to take maximum points and cement themselves firmly into second spot. But, despite taking a second half lead through Craig Feeney, Lee Marshall’s equaliser frustrated the visitors.
Sholing are the other side involved in the play-offs but they went down to a 3-2 home defeat to Halesowen Town, for whom Marcus Jackson completed a hat-trick with goals in the 24th, 63rd and 83rd minute – the last one from the spot after Lee Wort and Byron Mason had given the Boatmen a 2-1 lead by the 31st minute.
Stourport Swifts have finished rock-bottom and will now hope decisions elsewhere in the non-League Pyramid can save them. Denilson Vincente scored the only goal of the game at the npower Loop Meadow Stadium on Saturday for Didcot Town to condemn Swifts to their thirtieth defeat of the season.
Elsewhere on Saturday, Paulton Rovers finished the season on a high, winning 2-1 in the Forest of Dean to secure seventh place. Stuart Tovey converted a 19th minute penalty and 4 minutes later Marcus Mapstone hit a second from close range. Greg Lewis hit a consolation for the home side 6 minutes from time.
Goals from Danny Webb and Tom Jeffes sealed a 2-1 victory for Wimborne Town at home to Tiverton Town, while Sam Collier bagged a brace as Abingdon United won 2-0 at home to Bridgwater Town, and Jake Lee and Carl Brown were on the mark as Bishops Cleeve beat Clevedon Town 2-0 at home.
Two early goals by the hosts proved enough to inflict defeat as Bridgwater First Team go down 2-0 away at Abingdon United this afternoon (21 Apr), while the Reserve Team were without a game. More details to follow....
Goals by Bradley Middleton (pictured in red) after 6 minutes and Neil Peek after 47 earn Town First Team a fine 2-1 away win at Yate, and a goal by Jared Pople earned the Reserves a narrow win, also away, at Odd Down Reserves 1-0 (despite the league website originally saying they had lost!!!).
More details to follow...
Bideford Are Champions...
Easter Monday Round up...
Bideford are champions of Division One South & West, despite still having three more matches to play. The North Devon side made sure of finishing top after beating Taunton Town 1-0 at home on Easter Monday with Sean Downing scoring the only goal in the 86th minute.
(Everyone at Bridgwater Town FC would like to add their congratulations to the Robins from north Devon for their Title success which has capped an excellent season-long performance by Sean Joyce and his players - Well done one and all...!!!)
Nathan Kirby hit a late winner at Sholing to send promotion-chasing Gosport Borough up to second spot. After beating Bideford on Saturday, confidence was at bursting point in the Boro ranks, and goals from Justin Bennett after 14 minutes and Kirby 2 minutes into injury-time were enough to secure a precious 2-1 win after Tyrone Bowers had equalised from the penalty spot 11 minutes from time.
Poole Town moved into third place, above Sholing on goal difference, after beating second-bottom neighbours Wimborne Town 3-1 at home in front of 792 spectators. After a lightning start with goals from Dan Cann and Scott Joyce inside 5 minutes, the Magpies kept battling and tried to mount a comeback after the break. But the Dolphins put the verdict beyond doubt in the 69th minute when Will Spetch bundled home after Steve Devlin’s cross had caused the Magpies problems, The visitors` Nathan Peprah-Annan scored the best goal of the game, his excellent header converting a pin-point delivery from Poole old boy Micky Hubbard for a 72nd minute consolation.
Hungerford Town (who were without a game) occupy the final play-off slot above North Leigh, who are five points adrift with nine points to play for. Stuart Hole bagged a brace for Leigh – the second a penalty – with goals in the final 2 minutes from Joe Burnell and Tom Mills completing a comfortable win over Thatcham Town.
With Stourport Swifts already doomed to finish bottom, they shared a 1-1 home draw with Halesowen Town in which Craig Dinsley levelled Ben Haseley`s 48th minute opener with 19 minutes left.
Abingdon won by the odd goal in five at Didcot Town. Denilson Vincente gave Didcot the lead on 20 minutes before Sam Collier levelled on stroke of half-time. Adam Kingsbeer and then Sam Packer put Abingdon 3-1 ahead minutes after the break and despite a second from Vincente there was no way back for Diddy, who had Lee Henderson red carded late-on.
Clevedon’s hopes were boosted by a 4-2 Hand Stadium victory over Yate Town in which Chas Hemmings proved to be the Seasiders` hero with a hat-trick.
Elsewhere, Bishops Cleeve staged a second half comeback to claim all three points at Cinderford Town, for whom Aaron Cornwall had given the Foresters a 34th minute lead that Mike Tambling and then an Ashley Caldwell spot-kick cancelled out.
Managerless Mangotsfield United stretched their unbeaten league run to seven games with a hard-fought 3-2 victory over rivals Paulton Rovers with all the goals coming in the first 45 minutes. The home side took a 1-0 lead from the penalty spot when Lee Marshall stepped up and made no mistake after 12 minutes. Mangotsfield deservedly took a 2-0 lead after 23 minutes through Noah Keats. Paulton made it 2-1 with a 38th minute goal from Adam Mandi, but Mangotsfield restored their two-goal advantage thanks to a strike by Alex Hoyle. The scoring was not finished and, on the stroke of half time, Paulton pounced on a mistake by United's keeper Chris Astley and James Billing made it 3-2.
And Bridgwater Town won the derby at Fairfax Park against Tiverton Town, courtesy of second half goals from Bradley Middleton and Danny Wring.
Sunday 08 April - Report by Ben Norman
BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 3, POOLE TOWN 0Town continued their good form with a professional performance to see off a dogged Poole Town outfit. With the game only seconds old Town put together some great inter play for Devon Rich to cross for Chelsea Pitt who's left foot volley struck the bar. Victoria Tindall was next to try her luck in the opening exchanges but her good work on the right only led to a tame shot at the keeper. Town took the lead on 20 minutes when Faye Edwards' long clearance was raced onto by Pitt who calmly lobbed the oncoming keeper to score her 28th goal of the season. Poole slowly came into the game and unlocked Bridgwater with some long balls but even when a lob beat Town keeper Edwards Hannah Brown cleared well off the line. just before half time Town made it 2-0 through Charlotte Barnes (pictured) as her left foot volley from Tindall's corner left the Poole keeper clutching thin air.
The second half saw Town pick up where they left off the first. Pitt had a one-on-one saved and Gemma Baker had a shot go wide while Rich did test the hands of the keeper but all to avail. However, it wasn't long before Town had wrapped up the points with their third goal. A free kick delivered from Marie Campbell eluded all the Poole defenders and landed at the feet of Tindall who made no mistake from 10 yards out. Town could have extended the winning margin as Anneka Russ and Rich had further chances saved. In all it was a good performance that merited a higher winning margin but Town with the best defensive record in the league, the result never looked in doubt.
Town next play Swindon Supermarine at Fairfax Park on Sunday 15th April - 2pm.
Play-off hopefuls Gosport Borough grabbed a vital three points in Division One South & West on Saturday – beating table-toppers Bideford 2-1. Justin Bennett after 24 minutes and Nathan Kirby 11 minutes later were the scorers for the promotion-chasers at Privett Park in front of a decent crowd of 392.
Sholing kept up their slim chances of lifting the championship when a goal from Lee Wort in the 7th minute gave them a 1-0 victory at Tiverton Town, while fourth-placed Hungerford Town scored twice in the final 15 minutes through Joe McLellan and Harry Goodger to win 3-1 at Halesowen Town.
Poole Town maintained their play-off challenge when a Dan Cann goal 20 minutes from time gave them a 1-0 victory at Bishops Cleeve, while North Leigh won 1-0 at Yate Town, courtesy of a 55th minute Brian Bowles effort.
Paulton Rovers secured a 3-1 home win over Bridgwater Town with goals from Ben Osman, Lee Bryant and a debut strike from 18-year-old youth team captain Ryan Gay. Bridgwater’s reply came from Lewis Irish.
Thatcham Town gained revenge for their Red Insure quarter-final defeat to Clevedon Town by beating the Somerset side 3-2. Thatcham controlled the first half and led through Tom Browne's early goal. Shortly after Clevedon had levelled through Leigh Edwards-Samuels, Paul Taplin headed home Browne’s free-kick to make it 2-1. After conceding a second equaliser to Jonny Moss and surviving a couple of near-misses, the Kingfishers broke and Carl Self’s fine goal clinched a deserved three points.
Taunton Town snatched a point from a 1-1 home draw when they scored in the 3rd minute of time added on through Jamie Short after Kyle Tooze had given managerless Mangotsfield United a 26th minute lead.
Wimborne Town, trailing to a 37th minute Anaclet Odhiambo goal at half-time, drew 1-1 at home with Didcot Town, thanks to a Matt Kemble equaliser 16 minutes from time.
Second-bottom Abingdon United shared the points in a goalless home draw with Cinderford Town.
Replacement of floodlights...
The club have commissioned MUSCO Lighting to undertake the project for the upgrade of the floodlights at Fairfax Park to FA and Evo-Stik League requirements - with the contract in place the replacement of the luminares should be completed in four to six weeks utilizing the existing pylons, switchgear etc. The scheme will provide a uniform constant floodlight level well above the standard now required as well as energy savings, improved green / carbon footprint and less light pollution - over 80% lighting downward to the playing area.
The project is funded by the club and with grant aid from Bridgwater Town Council (Ward Grant), Sedgemoor District Council (RLT 3 - outdoor sport scheme) and the Football Stadia Improvement Fund to whom the club acknowledge their appreciation. Without this external support the scheme would not have been possible - even though the lights which have stood the test of time for many years were regarded by many who played under them to be as good as any at this club's level.
CLEEVE WEST TOWN 1, BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 3
By Rick Norman
Town ladies took on second placed Cleeve and produced an excellent performance to move up to fourth in the table. Playing in very warm conditions on a firm pitch, both teams served up an entertaining game. Both had their chances but it was Town who went into half time leading, thanks to a goal by Vicky Tindall. She moved onto a flick on by Devon Rich and slotted the ball past the advancing keeper.
Town almost increased their lead at the beginning of the second half, when Tindall latched onto a loose ball in the box only to see her shot pushed onto the crossbar by the Cleeve keeper. Town were on top but Cleeve equalized in a bizarre fashion. Marie Campbell and a Cleeve forward battled for a ball on the edge of the box. The ball was hit at pace towards Town Keeper, Faye Edwards, who, not sure whether it was a back pass,tried to head the ball clear,but only succeeded in heading the ball into her own net.
Despite this setback, Town continued to have the better of the play and regained the lead, when Chelsea Pitt took a pass, and fired low past the keeper. Five minutes later Gemma Baker fired Town's third flicking the ball high into the net. Cleeve came back at Town, but were restricted to long range shots, but Town held on comfortably to record an excellent victory.
Next Sunday, Easter Sunday, Town ladies are at home to Poole Town Ladies, kick off 2pm at Fairfax Park.
Town’s caretaker manager Kevin Milsom (Millie) said in the local press earlier this week that he felt the pressure has been lifted after the recent victory against Clevedon Town thanks to a thunderous Dave Pearse shot and an own goal in a 2-1 win. He also said it was pleasing to see smiles on the faces of players and supporters alike after the win.
Millie said about the win: “They (Clevedon) brought the game to us but I thought the team did a good job. Clevedon were a young team but they were pretty useful. Everyone is shooting from the right direction and everything is positive – people know where we want to go. The only pressure has been from not winning all year until now but the players seemed pretty relaxed and that is how we want them to be.”
He added: “With six games left of the season let’s hope we can continue in winning ways as we did against Clevedon Town in our last game a week and a half ago. And let’s hope we can see more of the youngsters coming through like Tom Hurley has in the last two games.”
With no game for the first team last weekend it was left to the Reserve Team to provide the footballing action with an entertaining 2-1 win over local rivals and title contenders Cheddar which completed the side’s only league double of the campaign so far.
Millie commented: “For those of you that were here last Saturday to see a great performance by the youngsters in the Reserves, thank you for your support - I know Luke & Rob really appreciate it as do I for the tremendous job they are doing.”
He added: “For the way forward is to bring young lads through and let’s get behind them and encourage. It is not going to happen over night…. But with games under their belt they will improve and become better players.
The most pleasing news for supporters and management alike is the striker Dave Pearse has pledged his allegiance to the club for the remainder of the season after turning down a ‘tremendous’ offer from promotion hopefuls Paulton Rovers.
Millie said: “I am delighted Dave has chosen to stay with us – it is great news that he has shown 100% loyalty to the club. He was made a tremendous offer by Paulton for the last part of the season, so it is a massive boost he has decided to stay.”
Dave Pearse himself added: “It was hard to turn down after a hard week at the club but after talking to the manager and chairman I decided staying was the best thing to do.”
Prior to registration deadline day, Town have recruited the services of a second Mawford - Jake, the younger brother of Craig who has been a first team regular for the Robins this term. Mawford junior joins on dual registration from Weston-super-Mare where he is highly thought of by manager Craig Laird. Jake has also had a spell at divisional rivals Mangotsfield United earlier in the season.
Neil Peek (one match) is suspended for the game against Halesowen tomorrow (Sat 31 Mar) after his recent sending off for two cautionable offences. There are also one or two regulars unavailable for various reasons and Millie has said some of the youngsters in the squad will be ‘blooded‘. He said: “You are never going to know if they are good enough unless you give them a chance and give them games under their belt - and they will certainly get that chance over the next few games.”
Millie added: “Halesowen have a couple of very good players – a midfielder who makes them tick and a striker who has scored a lot of goals. We know we can’t give them chances because we will be punished.”
The Reserves have no game on Saturday but are at home against Cutters Friday on Tuesday evening - kick off 7.45pm.
Bridgwater College and Bridgwater Town FC Easter Holiday Football Club
Bridgwater College and Bridgwater Town FC will be running the popular football club again this Easter break, with fun football activities such as ‘Cross Bar Challenge’, ‘Penalty Shoot-out’ and ‘Champions League Tournament'. There will also be a tour of Bridgwater Town’s stadium.
The club is available for boys and girls in school years 1 - 9 of all abilities and will run from 9.30am - 3.30pm on Thursday 12 April and Friday 13 April. Cost: £15 for 1 day / £25 for 2 days.
All coaches are FA qualified and CRB checked, some being current or former Bridgwater Town players.
Spaces are limited, so early booking is advised!
Download the booking form.
To book your child’s place, call Bridgwater College Course Enquiries on 01278 441234 to make your payment, or send a cheque (made payable to Bridgwater College) with your booking form.
Please note: you will need to have made payment and sent a completed booking form before your child’s place will be confirmed. Booking forms should be sent to: Luke Buckingham, Bridgwater College, Bath Road, Bridgwater, TA6 4PZ.
Each child needs to bring trainers, a packed lunch and plenty to drink. Please also send football boots if they have them.
For your chance to win a day's FREE place, just answer this question: How many grass pitches does Bridgwater College have? Send your answer to: email@example.com
Competition terms and conditions: There will be two winners - one for each day - which will be picked at random from correctly answered entries on Tuesday 10 April. Entrants must have already booked a place on the Holiday Club, and winners will be refunded the cost of one day's place (£15).
South West Women's League Eastern Division
BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 4, NAILSEA UNITED LADIES 0...
By Rick Norman
Town moved up to fifth after this comprehensive win over Nailsea. On a hot and sunny afternoon at Fairfax Park it took the players a while to come to terms with the conditions and the first half was very even with both sides creating chances but failing to convert any.
However, after the break Town stepped up a gear and went ahead in the 48th minute when Chelsea Pitt (pictured in red) ran onto a through ball and outpaced the central defenders before sliding the ball past the keeper.
This gave Town a lift and they increased their lead in the 56th minute when a cross from the left by Devon Rich was misjudged by the Nailsea keeper with ball floating over her head and bouncing into the far side of the net.
Nailsea then had their best spell of the game and created several good chances, but Ami Ward in the Town goal was equal to them.
Town increased their lead in the 73rd minute when a free kick from the left by Marie Campbell was knocked down and Pitt reacted to hit her second goal of the game. And moments later she nearly had a third but hit the outside of a post from an acute angle after rounding the keeper.
Town's fourth goal came in the 82nd minute when Anneka Russ scored from close range following a goalmouth scramble.
All the players worked hard in very hot conditions to produce an excellent game of football. Next week Town are away to second place Cleeve West Town Ladies.
Dave Pearse (pictured) has turned down a possible move to League rivals Paulton Rovers. Paulton put in seven days of notice for Pearse but he has decided to stay at Fairfax Park. Bridgwater's caretaker manager Kevin Milsom said: "Dave was made a tremendous offer by Paulton for the last part of the season. His decision to stay with us is not only a massive boost for the club but also for myself."
In Division One South & West on Tuesday night, North Leigh, had to settle for a point from a 3-3 home draw against Didcot Town, while managerless Bridgwater Town gained a first win in 2012 against Somerset neighbours Clevedon Town.
A remarkable see-saw Oxfordshire derby at Eynsham Hall Park eventually ended all-square. Former Didcot favourite Elliott Osborne-Ricketts gave the home side an 8th minute lead that Anaclet Odhiambo cancelled out after 27 minutes. Odhiambo gave Didcot the lead within a minute of his first but the Railwaymen trailed 3-2 at the break after Brian Bowles and Osborne-Ricketts again turned the game in North Leigh's favour. A Steve Davis strike for Diddy early in the second half brought the scores back to parity where they remained.
Bridgwater gained their first win under new caretaker-manager Kevin Milsom when they beat Clevedon 2-1 at Fairfax Park. Dave Pearse scored in the 21st minute to put Bridgwater 1-0 up at half-time. Steve Kingdom headed into his own net under pressure from Pearse to make it 2-0 after 67 minutes before Henry Moggeridge pulled a goal back for Clevedon in the 75th minute.
Bishops Cleeve stayed ahead of neighbours Yate Town in mid-table after winning 1-0 at Kayte Lane in the only game in Division One South & West on Wednesday night. Former Forest Green Rovers team-mates Alex Sykes and Rob Cousins were in opposite dug-outs and it was Sykes who earned bragging rights when Stuart Midwinter scored what proved to be the only goal of the game after 29 minutes.
SATURDAY'S ACTION (17 Mar)....
Bideford completed a 2-1 home win against Didcot Town to open up a twelve-point lead over Hungerford Town in Division One South & West on Saturday. Richard Groves broke the deadlock in Devon from the spot 3 minutes after the break and then Kevin Squire added a second 20 minutes from time before Alex Stanley reduced the deficit 8 minutes later. Bideford now need to win only four of their remaining seven games to be absolutely sure of lifting the title.
Hungerford had to settle for a point from a 1-1 home draw when Taunton Town's Raith Plant scored 10 minutes from time after Luke Hopper had given the home side a 56th minute lead.
Third-placed Sholing, two ahead at half-time through Tyrone Bowers and Lee Wort, scored midway through the second half from Wort again to complete a 3-2 home win 4 minutes after Bishops Cleeve had drawn level.
Richard Huckfield saw red as Halesowen Town were beaten by promotion-chasing Gosport Borough at The Grove. The defender was given his marching orders 7 minutes before the break for a second booking after bringing down visiting striker Dan Wooden. Brett Poate had earlier given Gosport the lead with a powerful free-kick and they went further ahead when Justin Bennett capitalised on a Michael McGrath error to score. Ben Haseley's penalty gave the Yeltz brief hope but substitute Liam Sewell's close range strike made sure of the points for Gosport.
Poole Town, having gone behind in the 20th minute of the second half, scored twice in 5 minutes to win 2-1 at Bridgwater Town and consolidate their position in the final play-off place. Kevin Milsom was unlucky to lose his first game in charge as caretaker-manager at home against play-off chasing Poole Town. Goalkeeper Purnell was the hero of the first 45 minutes with several outstanding saves. But it was Kyle Palmer (pictured) who struck the first goal on 64 minutes to give the hosts the lead. But shortly after Neil Peek was sent-off for a rash challenge on the halfway line, the game restarted and within 10 minutes Poole had scored twice through Scott Joyce and Nick Spetch to record the win.
Paulton Rovers, who had taken the lead in the 3rd minute through Dan Cleverley, kept their hopes alive when a goal in time added on from Lee Bryant gave them a 2-1 home win over North Leigh which moved them ahead of their visitors in the table on goal difference.
Thatcham Town, an Aaron Cornwall goal behind in the first minute, went down 2-1 at home when Cinderford Town scored 6 minutes from time through Nick McCootie.
With the bottom four involved against each other Clevedon Town got the better of third-bottom Abingdon United with three first half goals from Andy Kingdon, Johnny Moss and new signing Gianni Kapika giving them a 3-0 home win.
Second-bottom Wimborne Town, ahead courtesy of a Mark Benbow own goal in the 2nd minute, scored three times in the final quarter to complete a 4-1 home win over Stourport Swifts leaving the visitors twelve points adrift with just six games to play. Mickey Hubbard, a Calvin Dinsley penalty and Tom Jeffes were the Magpies` marksmen.
Yate Town's home match with Tiverton Town was abandoned with 17 minutes remaining when heavy rain made the pitch unplayable after the visitors, two down at half-time, had brought the score back to 2-2. This is the second time that heavy rain has caused a game at Lodge Road to be abandoned in the last month, the other was on Feb 18 against Paulton Rovers.
Kevin Milsom (pictured) takes charge of Bridgwater Town for the first time since the departure of manager Rob Dray when the side plays at home to Poole Town in Division One South and West tomorrow (March 17).
"All we can do is try and do our best between now and the end of the season," said Milsom. "I want players who will work and be proud to play for Bridgwater Town."
Bridgwater have picked up only one point from their last nine games but will be chasing a rare double against Poole, having won 1-0 away earlier this season.
Bridgwater Town (from): Purnell, Mawford, Pitcher, Peek, Barnes, Turner, Thomas, Monks, Wring, Palmer, Hurley, Pearse, Middleton, Clowes, Peppin, Villis.
Other fixtures: Bideford v Didcot Town, Clevedon Town v Abingdon United, Hungerford Town v Taunton Town, Paulton Rovers v North Leigh, Sholing v Bishops Cleeve, Wimborne Town v Stourport Swifts, Yate Town v Tiverton Town.
Three players have left Town since the departure of manager Rob Dray earlier this week. Former Weston super Mare skipper Andy Robertson and local striker Graham Mercieca are looking for other clubs while ex-Torquay United midfielder Simon Lyons has retired.
Milsom said: "I have spoken to all the players and I can confirm these three have left. I feel some of the players let Rob down in the last few weeks. I have been with the club for a long time and I'm only too happy to help out to the end of the season when we will evaluate the situation. I have been in this position before - about ten years ago."
Milsom, who is 51, played for Cirencester Town, Clevedon Town, Weston and Bridgwater before turning to management.
Bridgwater are expected to advertise the job of manager once the club have taken stock of the situation.
Midweek Round Up.......
Monday 12 March... Tiverton Town, two goals up at the interval thanks to strikes from Joe Bushin on 38 minutes and Josh Searle two minutes later, had to settle for a point from a 2-2 draw when hosts Mangotsfield United scored in the 67th minute - Tom Piotrowski bundling the ball home at the second attempt - before equalising in stoppage time through Mitchell Page's effort that went in off both posts.
Tuesday 13 March... In Division One South & West on Tuesday, second-placed Hungerford Town closed the gap on leaders Bideford to ten points with a 2-1 home win over Cinderford Town. Harry Goodger bagged a brace for the home side in the 19th and 45th minute - the Foresters` reply coming 14 minutes from time through Aaron Cornwall. The game was watched by the lowest gate at Bulpit Lane so far this season - just 55.
Injury-hit Taunton Town crashed to a 6-0 defeat away to Poole Town at Tatnam. Taunton never recovered after having centre back Chris McGrath sent-off for a `professional foul` early on. Steve Devlin after 7 and Michael Walker after 17 minutes scored to put Poole 2-0 up at half-time. Dan Cann on 51, Carl Preston 20 minutes later, Rhys Baggridge on 78 and substitute Scott Joyce in the last minute piled on the agony for ten-men Taunton after the interval. It enabled Poole to complete the season's `double` over Taunton, having won 2-1 at Wordsworth Drive in September
Thatcham Town won 2-1 away at bottom-markers Stourport Swifts to move up to seventh in the table. James Clark from the penalty spot after 56 minutes and Carl Self 5 minutes later were on target
The Club have parted company with manager Rob Dray by mutual consent after a very poor run of results which has seen the Club collect just one point out of a possible 27.
Rob took over at the start of season 2010/11 after a highly successful period running the reserve side including County League titles and Cup wins. After the departure of the bulk of first team players during the summer of 2010 the first objective of retaining Southern League status was achieved but apart from a spell mid-season the club has shown little progress this term and has continued to struggle, impacting severely on support and revenue and confidence all round.
Steve Perkins has also left his coaching role.
The Club place on record their thanks to Rob for his valued service with the club over many seasons from his playing days through and for his stirling efforts, hard work and commitment through a most difficult period in the club's history.
Assistant Manager Kevin Milsom will act as Caretaker Manager at least to the end of the season to allow the club time to take stock and consider the way forward.
BOTH LADIES TEAMS WIN ON SUNDAY...
At Fairfax Park this afternoon (Mar 11) the Ladies First Team beat visiting Cam Bulldogs 6-0, while at Bridgwater College the Ladies Reserves completed their League fixtures with a resounding 13-1 win against Wells City.
BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 6, CAM BULLDOGS 0.Town Ladies continued to climb the table with this comfortable win over Cam Bulldogs from Dursley in Gloucestershire - writes RICK NORMAN.
On a firm Fairfax Park surface Town started well, taking the game to Cam straight from the kick off. And the early pressure paid dividends after just 5 minutes when a defensive error allowed Chelsea Pitt to get in front of her marker before smashing the ball past the visitor’s goalkeeper for her first of the afternoon.
Town kept up the pressure and were somewhat fortunate to increase their lead 10 minutes later when a right wing cross by Pitt deceived the Cam goalkeeper with the ball drifting over her head and dropping into the net.
Cam battled hard but went further behind in the 24th minute when Pitt latched on to a through-ball by Gemma Baker before driving the ball home past the ‘keeper to complete her hat-trick.
As the half progressed the visitors came back into the game and were unlucky when a low right wing cross went across the face off Town's goal without anyone getting a touch. Town also came close to increasing their lead several times but the half finished without any further incident.
Cam started the second half strongly and pegged Town back for a while before Holly Cox went on a run down the left and her low left wing cross was turned in by a defender under pressure from Gemma Baker for Town‘s fourth.
A few minutes later a mix up in the Town's defence presented a Cam forward with a completely open goal but somehow she missed the target. That miss proved costly as Town were to increase their lead two minutes later when Devon Rich headed home number five from a corner by Anneka Russ. And it was Russ’s effort in the 77th minute that led to Town’s final goal when her cross from the right side of the penalty area beat the ‘keeper care of a huge deflection.
Cam still wouldn't lie down and Town’s ‘keeper Fay Edwards pulled off a great save near the end to deny the visitors a consolation.
Next week Town Ladies are at home again to Cleeve West Town. Kick off 2pm at Fairfax Park.
Bridgwater Town Ladies Reserves 13, Wells City Ladies 1
In their final league game of the season, Bridgwater moved back into second place in the table, and a guaranteed top three finish, with an emphatic win against sixth-placed Wells - writes PAUL SMITH.
Ami Ward (pictured) opened the scoring for the home team after just 2 minutes, with Chloe Stringer adding a second 4 minutes later. Ward then scored directly from a corner on 19 minutes, before completing her hat trick in less than half an hour. Ward’s fourth goal followed a few minutes later, with Stringer scoring her second just before half time.
There was no let up for the visitors in the second half, when Danni Cross scored 2 minutes after the restart, with Ward scoring her fifth a minute later. Despite still dominating the game, Town didn’t increase their lead for another 15 minutes until Katie England scored twice on 60 and 65 minutes to make the score ten-nil.
Wells managed to score on the break after 72 minutes, but the 10 goal advantage was restored 5 minutes later when a speculative shot from distance by Chloe Smith beat the Wells goalkeeper at the near post. Ward then rounded off a fine personal performance with 2 more goals in the last 10 minutes bringing her tally to 7 and the final score to 13-1.
The Ladies Reserves will be eagerly awaiting the result of Street’s final game next Sunday away at Broadwalk to see if their local rivals can regain the second promotion place - fingers crossed they don’t win!!!
SATURDAY'S ROUND UP (MAR 10)...
Kevin Squire scored a late winner as leaders Bideford won 2-1 against North Leigh, the in-form team in Evo-Stik League Southern Division One South & West on Saturday. Despite being reduced to ten-men in the second half when Ian Sampson was shown a straight red card for a late challenge, the league leaders dug in for one of their results of the season.
They played some slick football in the first half, taking a deserved lead right on half-time when Sampson and Matt Andrew combined and Sean Downing scored with a deflected shot. Even before the opening goal, Squire had struck the post, Andrew and Downing were denied by the keeper, and Squire failed to connect with another good opportunity.
It was a different story after the break when North Leigh, on a run of ten wins from eleven games, pegged Bideford back. They equalised through Michael Hopkins soon after Sampson was dismissed but the Robins regrouped and a mazy run from sub Ben Wood created the winner for Squire 9 minutes from time.
Second-placed Hungerford Town scored the only goal of the game in the 63rd minute through Harry Goodger to win 1-0 at Poole Town in front of a decent crowd of 458. Third-placed Sholing were held to a goalless at Cossham Street by Mangotsfield United, while Gosport Borough scored twice in the first half through Lee Molyneaux and Nathan Kirby to consolidate their fourth position with a 2-0 home victory over Paulton Rovers.
Tiverton Town, who had scored three times in the opening 25 minutes with Michael Nardiello scoring twice and Emati-Emati once, finally made sure of the points from a 4-2 home win when Nardiello completed his hat-trick in time added on against Halesowen Town, who had made a spirited come back in the second half to respond with goals from Marcus Jackson and Ben Haseley.
Thatcham Town were held to a goalless draw at Bishops Cleeve, as were Cinderford Town at home by Yate Town, but Didcot Town scored 6 minutes into the second half through Anaclet Odhiambo to win 1-0 at home against Red Insure Cup fianlists Clevedon Town.
At the foot of the table, second-bottom Wimborne Town scored in the 66th minute through new signing Shaun Brian to pick up three valuable points with a 1-0 victory at third-bottom Abingdon United. But basement side Stourport Swifts, ahead in the first minute, recorded only their second home win of the season with the 2-0 defeat of Bridgwater Town with the second coming from Lewis Pountney just past the hour-mark.
Tuesday's round up... (06 Mar)...
North Leigh scored two goals in two first half minutes to set up a 2-1 win at
Cinderford Town and Halesowen Town, a goal up at the break, added a penalty
eight minutes from time to win 2-0 at home against Abingdon United while Yate
Town, two goals down to bottom of the table Stourport Swifts, scored in time
added on at the end of each half to snatch a 2-2 home draw.
No footballing action for the Ladies section today (Mar 4). The Ladies First Team game at home against Poole Town was postponed due to a waterlogged Fairfax Park pitch while the Reserves had no scheduled game due to league cup matches (with them not involved).
SATURDAY'S ROUND UP
Bideford consolidated in top spot when they scored twice in each half to record
a resounding 4-0 home win over Cinderford Town while Sholing scored four times
in the second half to also win 4-0 at home against Didcot Town and move back
into second place above Hungerford Town who were held to a 0-0 draw at home by
bottom of the table Stourport Swifts and Gosport Borough, two goals behind
mid-way through the first half, scored with a minute remaining and again in the
second minute of time added on to grab a point from a 2-2 draw at second from
bottom Wimborne Town. Poole Town came from behind to win 2-1 at Paulton Rovers
and leapfrog their hosts into fifth place. Tiverton Town were held to a 0-0 draw
at Clevedon Town while Thatcham Town scored mid-way through the second half to
win 1-0 at home against Abingdon United while Bishops Cleeve, ahead on the
stroke of half time, conceded a second half own goal to draw 1-1 at Halesowen
Town. Yate Town, ahead after five minutes, scored three times in ten second half
minutes to record a resounding 4-0 home win over Taunton Town while Mangotsfield
United completed a 3-1 victory at Bridgwater Town.
Manager Rob Dray hopes the first team can bounce back and take advantage of their second home game in a week when they welcome Mangotsfield Town to Fairfax Park tomorrow (Mar 3).Town were on the wrong end of a 3-0 scoreline to Sholing last Saturday (Feb 25) in their first league game for nearly a month. But the Robins have a chance to right some wrongs with their second home game on the bounce this weekend.
“Credit to Sholing, they are a very good side and they’re not third in the league for nothing,” Dray said. “We looked like a team who hadn’t played for a month, but we’ve been working hard in training ready for the game on Saturday.”
Town currently sit 17th in Division One South and West, level on points with Didcot whose win at Tiverton on Tuesday put them ahead of Town on goal difference, and fierce rivals Taunton.
And Dray hopes to use the next few games to gain momentum to push up the league table. He added: “Our last few games we’ve played all the best sides, but now we have a run against teams in and around us. If we play to our potential we have the ability to beat anyone.”
Meanwhile, Town Reserves travel to Shirehampton tomorrow afternoon (Mar 3) after having a break from league action. Luke Buckingham’s lads will then welcome west Somerset rivals Watchet Town to Fairfax Park under the lights for a 7.45pm kick-off next Tuesday (March 6). The Reserves defeated Clevedon United 3-1 at home in their last outing thanks to goals from Josh Champion, Tom Hurley and Connor Watts.
SOMERSET FA PREMIER CUP - 2011-12...
ROUND THREE - ROUND UP.. On Tuesday night, in an all Toolstation League clash, Brislington made home advantage count as they overcame visitors Portishead 2-1 at Ironmould Lane, while, at The Hand Stadium, a single goal scored by Ashley Kington in the second minute was enough for Evo-Stik Southern Division One South & West hosts Clevedon Town to overcome a strong visiting Yeovil Town Reserves side 1-0.
Then, on Wednesday, Evo-Stik Southern Division One South & West Taunton Town swept into the semi-finals with a comfortable 5-0 away win at Plain Ham over Toolstation League Larkhall Athletic. Chris McGrath headed the opening goal in the 12th minute, Ross MacNab marked his return to the side with a second on 17 minutes and Jon Vance scored from a free kick in the 31st minute. Larkhall's hopes of a fightback were dashed in the 51st minute by Rodney Marsh who netted with a solo effort, and Luke Redrup hit the fifth in the 89th minute. In the other tie, Blue Square South Weston-super-Mare travelled to Badger’s Hill and beat Ev0-Stik Southern Premier Division Frome Town with goals from Nabi Diablo and Chris Young.
|Picture by Andy Slocombe|
Sunday Feb 26... South West Women's League Eastern Division
BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 3, Cirencester Town Ladies 3...
A late goal denied ten-man Bridgwater victory as they played out a thriller at home to Cirencester. Gemma Baker put the hosts ahead after Vicky Tindall's effort crashed back off the crossbar. But they were pegged back on 35 minutes when Faye Edwards was lobbed as she came out to close down an attack after the home defence was caught flat-footed by a ball over the top.
A quick turnaround saw Cirencester take the lead when Edwards was again lobbed in the Bridgwater goal with a carbon-copy move, and things got worse for Edwards soon afterwards when she received a straight red card for handling outside the area, with goalscorer Baker deputising between the sticks.
After the break Town came out with all guns blazing, and it wasn't long before Chelsea Pitt equalised for the home side before Emily Morris looked like she had sealed an unlikely win with a back-post header with ten minutes left. But, moments later, Baker was caught out in goal by a speculative shot to level the scores at 3-3.
SATURDAY'S ROUND UP...
In Division One South & West, second in the table Hungerford Town scored shortly after going behind in the 10th minute to take a point from a 1-1 home draw with Clevedon Town, but third-placed Sholing, a goal up at the interval, closed the gap with a comfortable 3-0 victory at Bridgwater Town.
Gosport Borough scored three goals before the break and added a penalty 10 minutes from time to complete an easy 4-1 home win over Yate Town and hold on to fourth position.
Poole Town scored three times in the first half to secure a 3-0 home win over Didcot Town, while Paulton Rovers added a goal 7 minutes from time to the three they scored before the break to keep up their challenge for a play-off place with a resounding 4-0 win over Thatcham Town.
North Leigh, also three ahead at the interval, scored in time added on to complete a 4-2 home victory over Taunton Town.
Cinderford Town behind after 5 minutes, scored a penalty in each half on the way to a 3-1 win at Mangotsfield United, while Tiverton Town, who took the lead a minute before half-time, won 2-1 at bottom of table Stourport Swifts.
Halesowen Town, two ahead at the break, scoredon the hour to complete a 3-0 home victory over second-bottom Wimborne Town, but Bishops Cleeve were held to a goalless draw at home by Abingdon United.
BISHOP SUTTON U18 2, BRIDGWATER TOWN U18 4...
Goals from Adam Long, Alex Pathy and Jared Pople (son of former Town player Shaun) earned Bridgwater's youngsters a Semi-final place with a fine 4-2 victory over their higher division opponents in a much postponed Somerset Floodlight League Knock Out Cup Quarter-final tie at Lake View, Bishop Sutton last night (Thurs Feb 23).
In the Semi-final Town face another away game and travel to The Recreation Ground in Backwell to play Ashton & Backwell United U18's who also compete in the Floodlight League Premier Division. The game is scheduled for Wednesday Mar 7 with a 7.30pm kick off - fingers crossed!!!
The victory against Sutton came only two days after losing 1-0 at home against Taunton Town U18's on Tuesday in the South Division of the League in front of a 100+ derby crowd. The evenly-contested game could have gone either way, but a goal by the Peacocks' youngsters early in the second half sealed the game.
Town's latest signing, goalkeeper Luke Purnell (pictured), has been included by manager Rob Dray in a 17-man squad for Saturday's (Feb 25) home game against Sholing in Division One South and West of the Evo-Stik League Southern. Bridgwater's first-choice goalkeeper Sam Hutchings has a knee injury.
Bridgwater, who have not played a league game for a month, after being 2-0 down at half-time in a competitive first 45 minutes, were eventually beaten 7-0 in a friendly by a very fit and technically superior young Exeter City side at Fairfax Park last night (Feb 22).
Despite the final result, the game was a good workout for Dray's men and showed the difference that full-time training brings to a team's fitness and skill levels. The Town players held their own for long periods of the game though and it was a case of silly errors and lack of match time near the end that made the difference.
(Saturday) Bridgwater Town (from): Purnell, Lewis, Middleton, Peek, Barnes, Mawford, Pitcher, Monk, Lyons, Palmer, Hurley, Pearse, Clowes, Thomas, Hobbs, Peppin, Mercieca
FRIENDLY VS EXETER REARRANGED FOR WEDNESDAY...
Town manager Rob Dray has just confirmed that Exeter City have agred to come to Fairfax Park on Wednesday evening this week (22 Feb) to play the First Team in a rearranged friendly after the original match was called off due to concerns over the pitch freezing a couple of weeks ago. The game will kick off at 7.30pm
Ladies Reserve Team Go Second...
By Paul Smith (Team Manager)...
Somerset County Women's League Division 2 match played Sunday 19 March 2012.
Mendip Ladies 1, Bridgwater Town Ladies Reserves 2
Bridgwater moved in to second place in the division after this hard earned win against mid-table Mendip. With only 10 players, it was the visitors that took the lead on 15 minutes when Ami Ward (pictured) found herself through on goal and prodded the ball home past the advancing Mendip keeper.
Despite pushing for a second goal, with Danni Cross coming close with a 20 yard strike that was superbly saved, it was the home side that scored next on the half hour mark. Bridgwater re-took the lead on 60 minutes, when once again Ward was through on go goal with only the keeper the beat. The keeper made a good block but Ward continued her run to turn the ball into the empty net.
There was then a long stoppage to the game with just 30 seconds remaining, when an ambulance was called after an injury to a Mendip player, but Bridgwater held their concentration to see out the victory.
Bridgwater Town Reserves 3, Clevedon United 1... Goals by Tom Hurley, Josh Champion and Connor Watts earned Town Reserves a vital three points in their battle against relegation in the Errea Somerset County League Premier Division after a 3-1 home win against Clevedon United. The win takes them a couple of placed further clear of the drop zone - although they have played more games than most of the teams around them.
Further details to follow...
Friendly - Bridgwater Town 4, Wellington 2
- Bridgwater came out on top in a competitive friendly at Fairfax Park last night (16 Feb) in a game arranged to give the first team some much needed match time during the current lull in league games.
The first half was an entertaining affair with some good football being played by both sets of players. Town's Dave Pearse was the first to find the back of the net on the half hour mark after being set up by Yeovil Town loanee Rob Clowes and Clowes himself added the second seven minutes later. Wellington reduced the deficit just before the break to make the score 2-1 at half time.
The second half was a fairly even affair with both sides giving no quarter. Kye Palmer restored Town's two goal advantage twelve minutes into the half with a fine finish but Wellington hit back fairly quickly to make it 3-2. Tom Hurley hit Town's fourth to make the game safe with ten minutes to go.
Many thanks to all concerned at Wellington for making it such a competitive game and to the match officials - Brian, Darren & Kieron - for officiating at short notice - Cheers all...!!!
BRIDGWATER TOWN FC LATEST NEWS - To give the First Team some much needed match time a friendly fixture has been hastily arranged for Thursday evening at Fairfax Park against local Toolstation Westen League side Wellington. Kick off for the game will be 7.30pm. Town manager Rob Dray is also looking to arrange another friendly at Fairfax Park for early next week - opponent to be announced.
The home game against Clevedon Town that was postponed on Saturday (11th Feb) due to a frozen Fairfax Park pitch has been rearranged for Tuesday 20th March with a 7.45pm kick off.
Meanwhile... Rob Dray has also announced his intention of extending the loan spell of Yeovil Town youngster Rob Clowes for another month - maybe two - which could see the highly rated striker stay at Fairfax Park until the end of the season. There is the small matter of all the paperwork to go through again, but the two clubs have over a week to sort out the details.
THE WEEK AHEAD FOR THE RESERVE TEAM...
(Alternative title 'Fixture juggling for the Reserves') On Tuesday night this week (14th Feb) the Reserves will be at home against Langford Rovers with a 7.45pm kick off. They were due to play Langford on Saturday (18 Feb) but due to Somerset Senior Cup rearrangements the game has been brought forward.
Clevedon United will now be the visitors next Saturday (18 Feb) with a 2.30pm kick off - this game has been brought forward from the following Tuesday (21 Feb).
Unfortunately this afternoon's Evo-Stik League Southern Division One South & West game against Clevedon Town has been postponed due to a frozen pitch. After overnight temperatures at Fairfax Park reached minus 6C it was reluctantly agreed at a 9.30am pitch inspection that the pitch wouldn't defrost enough to allow the game to go ahead. There were also a couple of areas of the pitch that had icy patches which were considered dangerous to the players - see pictures above.
A date for the re-arranged game has yet to be fixed - Clevedon already have midweek games for the next three weeks so we'te looking at mid March (probably).
As at 11.30am the only Evo-Stik League Southern game still ON is Bideford v Wimborne in Division One South & West - all other games have fallen foul of the weather.
The Reserve team have no game today as their scheduled trip to Shirehampton was called off due to Somerset U18 call-ups for four of our players.
On Tuesday night (14th Feb) the Reserves will be at home against Langford Rovers with a 7.45pm kick off. They were due to play Langford on Saturday (18 Feb) but due to Somerset Senior Cup rearrangements the game has been brought forward.
Next weekend the First Team are without a fixture due to their scheduled away game at Wimborne being brought forward to fill a gap earlier in the season, while the Reserves are waiting to hear of a replacement fixture for the Langford Rovers game.
UPDATE ON BRIAN AUSTIN -
THE MAN WITH A ‘VIEW‘ ON MOST THINGS BTFC:
As most of our fans will know, several months ago club stalwart and former local referee Brian Austin suffered a severe heart attack. Early indications were not that promising but, thankfully, BA - as he is affectionately known - is still defying all the odds and continues to make small steps of progress.
However, it does appear that he may well remain in hospital for a considerable time yet and to help in his recovery BA would benefit from seeing familiar faces and hearing familiar voices - even though at this point in time he is unable to hold a conversation. Anyone who is able to visit BA is more than welcome to do so.
BA is in TRISCOMBE WARD at Musgtrove Park Hospital in Taunton with visiting hours 2 - 4pm and 6 - 8pm
FAIRFAX PARK LATEST¦
Kyle Thomas (pictured) is in the running for a return to the first team squad for Saturday's home game against Clevedon Town. Injured before pre-season started - and before going travelling in the USA - Kyle has had a couple of games at Bristol Manor Farm recently to get some match time under his belt.
Kyle featured in the final 14 games of last season, scoring once, and earned some good reviews with his pace and enthusiasm. A young midfielder who learnt his trade at Toolstation League Bristol Manor Farm where he worked his way up from their Under-18 team to become a fans favourite at The Creek. Made his Bridgwater debut in the home 4-0 victory against North Leigh (19-02-11).
Meanwhile... Danny Wring serves the second of his two-match suspension on Saturday while Josh Turner misses the first of his two games for reaching ten first team cautions for the season.
Probable squad: (from) Hutchings, Peek, Mawford, Barnes, Pitcher, Middleton, Palmer, Lyons, Mercieca, Clowes, Pearse, Peppin, Robertson, Thomas, Hamilton, Hurley, Perkins, Watts, Lewis.
The Reserves are without a game this weekend due to having four of their promising youngsters - Adam Long, Callum Kennelly, Alex Pathy & Greg Turner - called up for Somerset FA Under 18 duty, so their scheduled away game at Shirehampton is now on Saturday 3rd March. Also - for the same reason - their away game against Nailsea Town on February 25th has been rearranged for Tuesday 17th April.
Bridgwater Town Reserves 3, Bishops Lydeard 3
Two goals from Connor Watts and a last gasp penalty by Tyne Govier (pictured) earned Town Reserves a well-deserved point at home in their Errea Somerset County League Premier Division derby against Bishops Lydeard at Fairfax Park tonight (07-02).
Reserves boss Luke Buckingham praised the character of his players after they came from behind three times to draw 3-3 with Bishops Lydeard. Buckingham said: “It was a very entertaining game and I was really pleased with the character that the players showed. Bishops Lydeard are a well organised side in this division but considering we had to keep coming back from goals behind it was a good point for us.”
Bishops Lydeard opened the scoring after 20 minutes but a superb run from Watts saw him cut inside a lash an unstoppable shot into the net to level the scores on the half-hour mark. The side entered the break with nothing to separate them, but Lydeard took the lead again in the 55th minute after a long through ball was not dealt with. Watts again equalised 10 minutes later as his predator-like instinct saw him bury a close-range effort into the back of the net.
With the game petering out, Lydeard looked to have stole all three points with a goal in the dying minutes, but Bridgwater were spurred on by skipper Sam Peppin and managed to win a penalty in the dying moments, with Govier stepping up to smash the ball into the top corner.
SATURDAY'S SCHEDULED RESERVE TEAM GAME AT GLASTONBURY WAS CALLED OFF DUE TO A FROZEN PITCH - SURPRISE, SURPRISE!!!
As a side note... It's a good job there wasn't a game scheduled to be played at Fairfax Park on Saturday as one of the water pipes in the home changing room burst overnight - thanks Mr Frost - more expense!!!
The freezing conditions accounted for all scheduled games in the Errea Somerset County League and Somerset Senior Cup which will result in some disruption in next weekend's scheduled matches.
Meanwhile.... in the Evo-Stik League Southern...
Premier Division - All matches postponed.
Division One Central - Only the fixture at St
Neots Town against Daventry Town looked set to survive the expected big freeze.
The match was given the go ahead at an inspection around 1.00pm thanks to a huge
effort by the Club and its supporters who kept drums of wood burning throughout
Friday and again on the day of the match but unfortunately the freezing
conditions had the last word and the fixture joined all the others on the 'off'
Division One South & West - All matches
DIVISION ONE SOUTH & WEST UPDATE...
New signing Steve Devlin believes his experience can make the difference and turn POOLE TOWN’s promotion dream from Division One South & West into a reality. The two-time supporters’ player of the year at Blue Square Bet South outfit Dorchester Town shocked the local circuit last week by stepping down two levels to join the Dolphins on a two-and-half year contract. But the 26-year-old insists his move to Poole does not signal a lack of ambition. Devlin told the Bournemouth Echo: “It is not in terms of the money why I’ve changed, it is the fact that Poole Town is a very good club that is on the up – they want to look to get into the next league and I like a challenge. No disrespect to Dorchester, but I don’t think they have the finances to go up and they will be stuck at that level. Dorchester is a very good club, and they have been very good to me, but with the way things worked out I had to make a change. I was due to come to Poole on loan earlier this season, but Dorchester pulled the plug on that. Now I’m here, my personal aim is to give my all and from what I’ve seen, there is enough quality to make the top five. We are knocking on the door and we are looking to push on, and I think that’s why Tommy and the board of directors bought me in. There are a great bunch of lads here. We’ve just got to learn not to panic when we go a goal down, and it will come. I will try to help as much as I can.” Devlin made his debut in Poole’s 4-1 win over Mangotsfield last Saturday – appearing just hours after Dolphins had completed an undisclosed four-figure deal with Dorchester. Dolphins chairman Clive Robbins added: “We needed and wanted to improve the squad, and having a player like Steve living locally and available was an opportunity we just couldn’t pass up. We found this league hard to begin with, but we’re getting greater success now and Poole deserves a team that is at least Southern Premier standard. We aim to get there by hook or by crook, whether that is this season or next. We haven’t broken the wage structure particularly, but it would be disingenuous of me to say we’re not spending a little bit more money than we did at the start of the season. We do look after our pennies here, though, and the club is solvent – we’re not going to go down the road of the late eighties or be going bust.”
Division One South & West club YATE TOWN`s defender Tyrone Mings says the players are now repaying the faith shown in them by manager Rob Cousins. Assistant-manager Michael Meaker has revealed that Blue Square Bet Premier clubs have been showing an interest in some members of the squad and Mings certainly would have caught the eye of any potential suitors in Yate’s thrilling 3-2 win over Thatcham Town last Saturday. The 18-year-old, who joined the club last summer, scored the first senior goal of his career with a superb 25-yard strike and set up Dave Stone’s winner 3 minutes from time as Yate came back from 2-1 down with ten-men after Tom Warren was sent-off. Mings had a difficult introduction to semi-professional football as Yate had to wait thirteen games for their first league win, but he has remained a regular fixture in the side throughout the season, with only fellow full back Warren making more appearances. Ten wins in the last fifteen games have lifted them to twelfth in the table and Mings hasn’t ruled out the possibility of a late play-off charge. He said: “We’re not too far away from the play-offs and we’re certainly higher than people expected us to be, but Michael Meaker and Rob Cousins have been superb to be fair. They’ve shown faith in the players and now we’re repaying them. If you take your eye off the next game it will be a hiccup, so we’re taking each game as it comes and we’ll see what happens. It’s been a mixed season. We’ve experienced the lows and now we’re going through a lot of highs, but it’s been a good team to come into and I couldn’t have asked for better.” Mings’ first goal for Yate was one to cherish and he was delighted to play a big part in the victory. “I didn’t hit it very hard - I just concentrated on hitting the target. Some of them fly over and some of them go in. When you win like that it’s a bonus. Sometimes when you go down to ten men the other team takes it for granted with the extra man. We worked hard and the lads were tremendous.” Mings is following in the footsteps of his dad Adie, who carved out a successful non-League career as a striker and had a spell on loan at Yate in 2000, and many believe he has what it takes go even further. “He’s somewhat of a legend apparently!” said Mings of his dad. “I’m looking to play as high as I can and whether that’s the next level or higher than that we’ll see what happens.” Mings will miss this Saturday’s game at home to Stourport Swifts through suspension, along with Mark Badman, who completes a three-match ban. Meanwhile, Russ Church has had his contract cancelled as he’s struggling to commit regularly due to family commitments, but he will remain registered with the club. Defender John McAlinden is still working in Germany, but made a surprise appearance on the bench against Thatcham.
Despite much recent speculation, Phil Bater has not resigned his position and will continue as manager of Division One South & West club MANGOTSFIELD UNITED. After a meeting between the manager and the club’s board arranged prior to last Saturday's fixture, a number of issues were addressed. Bater said: "At the meeting a number of concerns I had were addressed, these included a sustainable budget, the playing surface at Cossham Street, training facilities and the need for a chief scout.” Bater added: "Over the season we've lost a lot of our professionalism in the way in which things have been done or carried out which is hugely disappointing for me. However, I'm now confident that things will improve and be put in place for next season.” Bater finished by saying: "The aim for the remaining thirteen games is naturally to win as many as possible, particularly our home matches in front of our own supporters. Ideally I'd like to bring in one or two players to boost the quality of the squad and add a bit of much needed depth."
SATURDAY'S EVO-STIK LEAGUE SOUTHERN, DIVISION ONE SOUTH & WEST ROUND UP
Bideford struck twice in the second half against Halesowen Town to remain six points clear at the top of the Evo-Stik League Southern, Division One South & West table on Saturday. Matt Hockley with a 55th minute penalty and Jamie Mudge 3 minutes from time scored the goals that ended the visitors' challenge at the Sports Ground. The Robins' 2-0 win extended their unbeaten league run to seventeen games, and they were rarely tested by a Halesowen side who have now suffered six successive defeats.
Second-placed Hungerford Town, a Paul Robinson goal behind 10 minutes into the second half, hit back to secure a 2-1 home win over Didcot Town, thanks to goals from Mark Draycott from the spot after 53 minutes and Luke Hopper on 64 minutes.
Sholing scored through Sam James 5 minutes from time to win 1-0 at Cinderford Town and move into third replacing Paulton Rovers, who were held to a 1-1 draw at home when Abingdon United’s Sam Collier scored a penalty 4 minutes from time after Adam Mahdi had given the hosts a 67th minute lead.
Justin Bennett’s brace helped Gosport Borough to a hard-fought 2-1 win over Bridgwater Town at Privett Park. The striker put Boro 1-0 ahead after 19 minutes before his side were reduced to ten-men when Dan Wooden picked up a straight red card for a two-footed challenge. Despite that, Bennett added another on 34 minutes before the visitors pulled one back through Ollie Barnes 5 minutes later and made Boro work for their victory.
Poole Town, trailing to a Lee Marshall effort at half-time, scored four times in the final 24 minutes to keep up their challenge with a 4-1 home win against Mangotsfield United. Rhys Baggridge netted twice, Dan Cann and Carl Preston one apiece for the Dolphins.
North Leigh scored in the first half to win 1-0 at home against bottom of the table Stourport Swifts. Thatcham Town, a goal down after seven minutes but ahead at the interval, conceded two goals in the final ten minutes to lose 3-2 at Yate Town.
Taunton Town recovered from a 2-0 deficit to share the points in a six-goal thriller against Bishops Cleeve at Wordsworth Drive. The visitors led 2-0 at half-time, thanks to a Carl Brown brace, but shortly afterwards Taunton reduced the arrears through Rodney Marsh and then drew level with a goal from well-travelled Peter Knox. Cleeve retook the lead 10 minutes from time when Brown completed his hat-trick, but 2 minutes later Marsh scored the equaliser.
Clevedon Town entertained fellow strugglers Wimborne Town and drew 1-1 on a heavy pitch that only passed a pre-match inspection thanks to the hard work of volunteers and lots of sand! Wimborne’s pressure finally paid off in the 25th minute when Clevedon custodian Jason Mellor failed to get sufficient distance on his punch and the ball fell to Tom Jeffes on the edge of the area from where he found the back of the net with the aid of a deflection. Leigh Edwards-Samuels got the slightest glances on the cross to send the ball into the net from a narrow angle and put the Seasiders level on the hour-mark.
BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 5 v. BLANDFORD UNITED LADIES 0
By Rick Norman
This was a comfortable victory for Town over bottom club Blandford. They took the lead in the 3rd minute when a corner was headed on by Gemma Baker and Chelsea Pitt (pictured) was on hand at the far post to slam Town ahead. A combination of spirited defending by Blandford and some indifferent passing and finishing by Town meant that the game remained the same, with Blandford only occasionally threatening, until the 40th minute, when a Vicky Tindall free kick was headed on by Charlotte Barnes and Chelsea Pitt met the ball and fired past the keeper. After the break Town seemed to get their passing game together, and they increased their lead in the 60th min, when Chelsea Pitt latched onto a through pass by Barnes. She drew the the keeper before sliding the ball into the net to complete her hat trick. Vicky Tindall hit number four in the 63rd minute, driving home from 20 yards and she completed the scoring in the 83rd min when she scored from close in following a cross from the right.
Next week Town are at home to Swindon Supermarine. Kick off 2pm at Fairfax Park
Menawhile.... Goals from Danielle Cross (3), Corrine Gillard, Laura Potticary, Faran Stewart and Chloe Stringer (4) earned Town Ladies Resereves a 10-2 victory over Somerton & Langport Ladies in their game played at Bridgwater College. The Reserves are at home again next Sunday versus Wells City Ladies - again at Bridgwater College, 2pm kick off.
GOSPORT BOROUGH 2, BRIDGWATER TOWN 1
Home side Gosport Borough went 2-0 up after a brace of goals from Justin Bennett in the 19th and 34th minute. Ollie Barnes (pictured) reduced the deficit six minutes before the break, but after a goalless second half the crowd of 242 saw the home side triumphed 2-1 to extend Town's run of poor results to one point from the last six games....
Full match report to follow...
RESERVES 2, NAILSEA UNITED 3
After a goalless first half, Bridgwater Reserves went two goals up by the hour mark with strikes from Jared Pople and Connor Watts (pictured). But, visiting Nailsea United hit back with three unanswered goals in the last ten minutes - the last a penalty deep in stoppage time - to win 3-2.
ONE IN AND ONE OUT AT FAIRFAX PARK
The paperwork was completed earlier today (27-01) for the loan signing of striker Rob Clowes from Yeovil Town to enable him to play for the Robins in the game at Gosport tomorrow (28-01). He joins initially for a one month period until Saturday 25 February - the day after his 19th birthday…!!!
Rob has been an integral part of the Yeovil Town youth team for the past two seasons and has proved a regular goalscorer at that level. At the end of season 2010-11, Rob earned himself a first professional contract with the Glovers.
Prominently a striker, Rob can also play at the middle of the back four and his form has earned him several call ups to the substitutes bench for Yeovil’s first team. Rob’s development this season has also seen him spend time on loan at Toolstation League Premier Division side Sherborne Town and Evo-Stik League Southern, Division One South & West side Wimborne Town.
We would like to thank Jean Cotton (Yeovil Town Secretary) and the management team at Huish Park for their help with the paperwork etc…
Rob’s inclusion in the squad for tomorrow is timely as the transfer of striker Aaron Cornwall to divisional rivals Cinderford Town was completed last night (27-01).
FIRST TEAM TO PLAY EXETER CITY XI
On Wednesday 1st February Bridgwater Town's First Team will play a strong Exeter City XI at Fairfax Park with a 7.30pm kick off.
Admission prices for the game will be; Adults £5.00, Seniors £3.00 with Juniors (aged 16 & under) FREE.
SATURDAY 21 JANUARY ROUND UP
Evo-Stik League Southern, Division One South & West
Sean Downing scored the first half winner as leaders Bideford battled for a 1-0 win at Bishop's Cleeve on Saturday. The Robins did just enough to extend their unbeaten run to sixteen games and maintain a six-point lead at the top. Both sides struggled to create chances with the strong wind making fluent football difficult. But Bideford made the breakthrough after 30 minutes as Downing latched on to a pass from Matt Bye to slot the decisive goal. Bishop's Cleeve, unbeaten in six games, pressed for an equaliser but found Aaron Harper-Penman and Jack Furzer holding strong in the visiting defence.
Second-placed Hungerford Town also recorded a 1-0 away win with a goal from Mark Draycott 11 minutes after the break at Bridgwater Town, while third-placed Paulton Rovers, trailing to a 22nd minute Ben Haseley goal at half-time, scored twice after the break through Ollie Price and Dan Cleverley to win 2-1 at The Grove against Halesowen Town, and Sholing, a George Brimson goal behind after 9 minutes, moved into fourth place when they scored three times in the second half through Marvin McLean, Byron Mason and Kevin Brewster to win 3-1 at home against Clevedon Town.
Gosport Borough's recent good form came unstuck at Tiverton Town as they went down to a 3-1 defeat at Ladysmead. Liam Sewell gave Alex Pike's side a half-time lead, but despite the heroics of returning keeper Nathan Ashmore, he could do little as the home team hit the back of the net three times in the second half, with Jules Emati-Emati on target twice and Michael Nardiello once, to earn a convincing victory.
Cinderford Town were held to goalless draw at Didcot Town, but Poole Town scored two goals in 6 minutes either side of half-time, courtesy of Rhys Baggeridge and Steve Smith, to win 2-0 at bottom of the table Stourport Swifts. Mangotsfield United, behind to goals from Andy Caton and James Organ at half-time, scored twice to draw level through Harley Purnell and Kyle Tooze only to concede a goal from Stuart Hole 10 minutes from time and lose 3-2 at home to North Leigh.
TAUNTON TOWN - in front of just 121 spectators - had to settle for a share of the points against visitors Abingdon United at Wordsworth Drive. The Peacocks had several chances just wide in a goalless first half, and were reduced to ten-men just on the hour when Jamie Short was sent-off for a foul inside the box. Abingdon took the lead through a Sam Collier penalty on 72 minutes and that looked like being the only goal until Simon Ingram slotted home a close range effort on 90 minutes to make it 1-1 at the final whistle.
Finally Yate Town scored early in each half through Robin Nicholls and Dave Stone to win 2-0 at second-bottom Wimborne Town.
Ladies Team Matches played Sunday 22.1.12
Bristol Soccerworld League Cup - Round 2
BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES 6
CIRENCESTER TOWN LADIES 0
Having lost away to Cirencester in the league, Town were expecting a difficult game against a well organised and skilful side, and for the first half an hour there was nothing between the teams. Both sides created chances but neither side troubled the keepers very much. That all changed in the 31st minute, when Anoka Russ cut in from the left and hit a ferocious drive that hit the underside of the bar. Fortunately Chelsea Pitt was on hand to knock the ball home. This seemed to knock Cirencester out of their stride and from a cross from the left, following a partly cleared corner, Amber Moule headed in a second in the 35th minute. Five minutes later, Vicky Tindall drove forward in midfield before hitting a 25 yard drive into the top corner, leaving the keeper motionless, for Town's third. To compound Cirencester's misery one of their players received a straight red card for foul language to the referee just before the break. In the second , Town continued to press forward creating several chances and restricting Cirencester to the occasional attack. New signing Devon Rich, came on for her debut and in the 70th minute she scored Town's fourth, when she chipped the ball over the keeper's head from the left hand side. By now Town were all over Cirencester who seemed to have lost any fight they had, and in the 80th minute Amber Moule got her second goal, firing in from 12 yards after a corner. Chelsea Pitt completed the rout, grabbing her second in the 85th minute, running onto a through ball, before slotting the ball past the keeper. This was an excellent team performance from The Ladies with special praise going to Anoka Russ for her tireless running and effort in attack.
Somerset County Women’s League Division 2
ILMINSTER TOWN LADIES RESERVES 0
BRIDGWATER TOWN LADIES RESERVES 8
Electing to play up a steeply sloping pitch in the first half, Bridgwater finally made the break through after 25 minutes from a 15 yard strike by Laura Potticary. A second goal followed within a minute, scored by Ami Ward at the far post. On 40 minutes Danni Cross struck a 25 yard free kick to make it 3-0, before Chloe Stringer added the fourth also from a free kick at the end of the first half. Two minutes into the second half, Stringer scored her second and made it a hat trick on the hour mark, with a delicate lob over the keeper. Her fourth goal came 5 minutes later, with Cross completing the scoring on 70 minutes with another 25 yard strike, this time from open play.
Townley Goes "Down-Under"
Bridgwater Town captain, Matt Townley, played his last game of the season against Taunton Town in the Evo-Stik League Southern Division One South & West derby on Bank Holiday Monday.
The 28-year-old is travelling to Australia today with partner Kim to work as a physiotherapist near Melbourne. “I have really enjoyed my football in the last few years at Bridgwater. They are an honest set of lads that stick together and play for the right reasons,” said Townley, who has led the team through a rollercoaster ride this season and said he feels like he is leaving with unfinished business. He added: “We have just started to look like we can do it and have a sniff at the play-offs.“I am really sorry to have to go and to say bye to the lads.“I would love to come back and play for the club because it is a nice place to play my football and it has been a privilege.“I have really enjoyed my football in the last few years at Bridgwater. They are an honest set of lads that stick together and play for the right reasons. Manager Rob Dray confirmed that Danny Wring will take over the captain's armband. Dray described Townley as a role model and a big loss to the squad, adding: “Matt is such a great lad and a great player too. “He will be a big loss. On and off the pitch he conducts himself well and he is a great lad to have around in the dressing rooms.”Townley revealed that he will be taking his football boots 'Down Under' with him but said he has not sorted out a club yet. He added: “I need to sort my work out and get settled first. “If I start missing football then I might have a look at some clubs in the Victorian State League - but I fancy trying something new out there as well.”
Townley believes that the side has the ability to reach the play-offs despite the Robins having played more games than anyone else in the division. He said: “If we can keep the group of lads together then hopefully they can kick on because they are all so hard working and have bags of ability.“It would be really nice for the management too who work their socks off and for Rob who does everything in his power and ability to look after you.“It is always better to have points on the board because you don't want to be having to play two or three times a week come the end of the season.”