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Taunton Town Results Match Review
Saturday 04 November 2017
Didcot Town v Taunton Town
4 - 0

With Bristol Manor Farm losing at Swindon Supermarine, the Peacocks opened up a five point lead at the top of the table with an emphatic victory at Didcot.

Leigh Robinson made just one change to the side that had beaten Merthyr in the FA Trophy, Chris McGrath coming in at centre back for the suspended Ben Adelsbury, and his team took an early lead with a great counter attacking goal. McGrath sent a headed clearance to Matt Buse who in turn fed Ollie Chamberlain. The midfielder switched play to Shane White who released Dan Sullivan with a perceptive through ball. The ex-Tavistock striker drew keeper Leigh Bedwell and clipped a left foot finish into the far corner.

Sullivan could have had a second with a deflected effort just moments later, but then Lloyd Irish had to be at his most alert to dash out and deny George Reid after the Didcot midfielder had been put through one-on-one.

Buse saw a stinging left foot drive blocked by a defender’s leg and Matt Wright headed a Ryan Brett free-kick wide as Taunton threatened to double the lead. However, Didcot almost equalised ten minutes before the break. Louis Joyce set up Sam Elkins who scuffed his drive into the path of Reid who was just unable to connect. Sullivan replied with a drilled shot which went inches past the post as the visitors enjoyed the lead at the break.

Wright and McGrath had chances shortly after the interval, but Didcot enjoyed their best spell of the match in the opening stages of the second half. However, despite some good play through midfield they were unable to fashion any clear openings, and Taunton killed the game off just before the hour mark with their second brilliant counter attack of the afternoon.

This time, after an Andrew Ballard cross had been cleared, Pierce Mitchell set off on an exhilarating burst that took him nearly the whole length of the right-hand touchline. Finally arriving at the corner flag, Mitchell’s cross was of equally sublime quality and Chamberlain on the far post simply could not miss.

Liberated, Taunton ran riot in the final quarter. Matt Wright saw a shot deflected wide but was not to be denied long as he got across his marker to nod home Brett’s 74th minute corner. Set up by a superb Sullivan pass, Wright should have had an immediate second, but wildly blazed his shot over. A minute later though, Sullivan gave his strike partner another chance with a deft chip over Didcot’s now traumatised back line. This time Wright opted for a more considered side-foot that found the net to conclude the scoring.

Buse and Mitchell had good chances to extend the lead further in the closing stages, both being denied by Bedwell saves, but the winning margin was already the best of Taunton’s season.

By James Wright

Taunton: Lloyd Irish, Pierce Mitchell, Ben Palmer (Ross Staley 64), Shane White, Chris McGrath, Brett Trowbridge, Ollie Chamberlain (Omar Simpson 78), Ryan Brett, Matt Wright (captain), Dan Sullivan (Les Afful 78), Matt Buse. Unused sub: Michael Meaker  

Didcot: Leigh Bedwell, George Jeacock, Cameron McNeill, Lewis Hayden, Andrew Ballard, Adam Learoyd (captain), George Reid, Sam Elkins, Felipe Barcelos, David Murphy (Seth Humphries 68), Louis Joyce (Marlon Agyakwa 62). Unused subs: Matthew Woodley, Sam Parish, Michael Alexis

Referee: Paul Forrester (Luton)

Assistants: Oliver Cross (Reading), Ross Murphy (Reading)

Attendance: 191


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