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FOOTBALL: Peacocks beaten at high-flying Poole
4:09pm Wednesday 6th March 2013 in Sport
Taunton’s five game unbeaten run ground to a halt when they lost 4-1 at title favourites Poole Town last night, writes Andy Power.
The Peacocks had managed to keep the Dolphins submerged until the game entered the final third but the hosts eventually pulled away for a comfortable albeit over-inflated victory.
It soon became apparent that Poole’s resources are focused on their playing budget rather than their ground facilities as they passed the ball around confidently, launching a series of attacks but failing to take the chances on offer during the opening 45 minutes.
Marvin Brooks should have scored early doors but his shot was cleared whilst a header from the same player drifted back across goal from Luke Burbidge’s cross. Grant Fisher who returned between the sticks then turned aside Carl Preston’s shot and Steve Devlin’s free kick, with other approach play being let down by a poor final ball.
Taunton, who missed the physical presence of Carl Cliff Brown up front, were limited to the one real chance, Craig Herrod’s persistence giving Simon Ingram the opening for a shot but his attempted curler went wide.
After Sam Clarke saw his header go narrowly wide for the hosts following the interval, a Peacocks offensive put Poole on the back foot. The ball was taken off Herrod’s toe as he was lining up to shoot, Raith Plant fired over and Rob Norrish saw his effort saved by Nick Hutchings before Rodney Marsh set up Ingram from close range but the Town captain missed connecting.
Brooks fired over an open net when Fisher failed to gather as Poole regained their foothold in the game, eventually taking the lead after 69 minutes. Keith Emmerson made ground cutting in from the left and delivered a cross which Michael Charles sidefooted home.
A hotly disputed penalty then gave Poole breathing space after 75 minutes. Despite the assistant signalling otherwise, the referee pointed to the spot after it was deemed the falling Adam Kelly had been touched by Owen Irish. Devlin drove the penalty into the right-hand corner and Irish received a yellow for his valid protest.
Dan Cann dispossessed Irish to run on and finish past Fisher on 82 minutes for the third goal and Charles notched his brace two minutes into stoppage time, slotting the rebound into the net after Fisher had parried a Cann volley.
Town substitute Khaled Badavi then proposed his nomination for Goal of the Season, collecting the ball on the left and weaving his way through the entire Poole defence before stroking the ball into Hutchings’ bottom left corner to register a deserved consolation a minute later with virtually the last kick of the match.
Taunton: Grant Fisher, Jamie Short, Alex Jeannin, Owen Irish, Ed Weeks, Shane Kingston (Tom Hopkins 68), Rob Norrish, Simon Ingram (captain), Raith Plant (Khaled Badavi 81), Rodney Marsh (Hayden Roe 77), Craig Herrod.
Poole: Nick Hutchings, Sam Clarke, Will Spetch, Keith Emmerson, Michael Walker (captain), Adam Kelly, Luke Burbidge (Michael Charles 45), Steve Devlin, Warren Byerley (Dan Cann 62), Carl Preston (Jacob Cane 71), Marvin Brooks. Unused subs: Steve Richardson, Lamin Dibba.
Referee: Samuel Ogles (Eastleigh).
Assistants: Stephen Graham (Totton), Wayne Thomas (Southampton).