Taunton Town vs Chippenham Town
Date: September 4th, 2020
Competition: Pre-Season Friendly
Venue: Cygnet Health Care Stadium
Kick Off: 7.30pm
A confident and accomplished display from the Peacocks steered them to another pre-season win in their first game in front of supporters since last season. Those in attendance at the Cygnet Health Care Stadium cannot fail to have been impressed by the way the new-look Town squad are beginning to gel during the build-up to the competitive action in a fortnight’s time.
The opening quarter hour saw little action at either end. Gethyn Hill was denied early on by keeper Jarad Thompson to win an early corner and Dan Sullivan’s wayward volley flew over while Lloyd Irish was only called upon to claim a couple of crosses. That all changed after 20 minutes when the Peacocks, missing the injured Lee Lucas and Grimsby-bound Luke Spokes, took the lead with a cracker when Hill latched onto a stray ball and arrowed his shot over Thompson from well outside the box.
Chippenham soon restored parity just three minutes later when Town conceded a free kick on the right, Joe Hanks opting for a pass to Luke Russe on the edge of the area and his curled effort beat Irish’s dive to find the corner of the net.
Both sides continued to attack up to the break without finding another score. Hill’s delivery back in from a cleared corner saw Jake Wannell head wide at the far post, then Owen Howe’s header was straight at Thompson from Sullivan’s cross before another Wannell header from Sullivan’s corner was hacked off the line just before the half time whistle. Eddie Jones also gave the visitors a threat, his cross being held by Irish to stop Bradley Ash capitalising while another cross flashed across the face of goal with no-one able to apply a touch.
After the interval, the hosts made the better start, a miskick by Thompson giving Hill a sniff but his long range effort was too high while Howe flicked a header wide from Hill’s cross. A great run from Ollie Chamberlain set up Jake Mawford for a cross which couldn’t pick anyone out, then Mawford himself powered down the right and from his centre Hill and Jay Foulston had shots blocked before Chamberlain drove a left footer over the top.
It was nearly the hour mark before Chippenham managed their first attempt of the second half, but Chris Zebroski blazed well wide, then Ash turned in midfield and made ground but again failed to find the target. Toby Holmes who had replaced Howe then saw his half volley from Chamberlain’s cross deflect off a defender, earning a corner from which Town regained the lead. Ben Adelsbury met Foulston’s delivery, the ball momentarily pinging around until Nick Grimes connected 15 yards out to fire home on 65 minutes.
The Peacocks were now playing some fine football on the offensive while also looking assured at the back. Grimes headed over from a Foulston corner and substitute Chippenham keeper Will Puddy got down low to clutch Chamberlain’s strike. A third goal was no more than Town deserved and it was Holmes who obliged a minute from time, Ross Staley chesting the ball down to the new striker who moved across from the left, shook off a couple of challenges and cracked home a fine finish into the far corner, capping off an encouraging performance and an entertaining game.
Taunton: Lloyd Irish, Jamie Short (Jake Mawford 45), Jay Foulston (Jordan Copp 76), Ben Adelsbury, Nick Grimes (captain), Jake Wannell, Ollie Chamberlain, Gethyn Hill, Owen Howe (Toby Holmes 59), Dan Sullivan (Ross Staley 65), Joe Guest. Unused sub: Lee Lucas
Chippenham: Jarad Thompson (Will Puddy 71), Luke Russe, Ryan Case, Bradley Ash, Rhys Taylor, Spencer Hamilton (captain) (Kieran Parselle 45), Joe Hanks, Callum Gunner, Eddie Jones (Chris Zebroski 45), Dave Pratt, Ethan Hill (Ross Stearn 71)
Referee: Rick Hulme (Radstock)
Referee’s Assistant 1: Martin Peters (Bristol)
Referee’s Assistant 2: Matt Eva (North Petherton)