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Taunton Town (0)1 Bath City (0)1

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Taunton Town (0)1  Bath City (0)1 Empty Taunton Town (0)1 Bath City (0)1

Post by Kelston Koppite Wed Sep 28, 2022 9:43 am

Alex Fletcher struck with an equaliser deep into stoppage time that salvaged a point for Bath City in the Somerset Derby against Taunton Town at rainy Wordsworth Drive. The hosts had taken the lead early in the second half through an errant cross by Joe Budd and held on to this advantage until the 8th minute of added time at the end of a hard fought, and sometimes fractious, match between county rivals.

City began brightly and home keeper Jack Bycroft was called into action in the 2nd minute to save Fletcher’s effort from the edge of the area. It was the hosts through that enjoyed the balance of possession for a period thereafter, during which Budd fired high over Joe Wright’s bar from outside the box in the 13th minute. A dangerous cross from the right six minutes later flew across the face of City’s goal with nobody able to apply a telling touch.

The visitors began to gain control of the midfield area and created the better openings. Cody Cooke’s 25th minute shot flew wide of the target. Shortly afterwards, Dan Hayfield’s measured high ball into the box was met with Cooke’s looping header was pushed over the crossbar by Byfield.

With eleven minutes remaining before the interval, Luke Spokes delivered a free kick into the danger zone only for Fletcher’s header to pass wide of the far post.

Town exerted more pressure in the latter stages of the half, but the City rearguard remained resolute, and Wright was largely untroubled.

Taunton commenced strongly after the break and pushed The Romans back deep into their own half. A low cross from the left created some uncertainty in the Bath defence and Wright did well to block the ball on the goal-line amongst a crowd of legs, but the home side were ahead on 53 minutes in bizarre circumstances. A cross from wide out right by Budd deceived everyone, including Wright, and the ball somehow dropped into the far corner of the net much to the dismay and disbelief of the visiting supporters at the other end of the ground.

City tried to step up the tempo but were struggling to find any real flowing movement going forward, and possession was often given away on the greasy surface. However, Cooke unleashed a powerful drive in the 58th minute that Byfield palmed away at full stretch.

Rex Mannings made way for Scott Wilson on 59 minutes and, almost immediately, Cooke had another effort repelled by Byfield following Kieran Parselle’s neat flick on from a free kick into the box.

Ross Stearn, one of several ex-City players in the home ranks, fired over Wright’s crossbar in the 64th minute after the ball had been played in from the right, as Taunton looked to increase their lead. However, the introduction of Elliott Frear for Tom Smith on 65 minutes, and Chris Lines for James Morton six minutes later saw Bath gradually
gain the upper hand in terms of territorial advantage.

Hayfield’s shot from distance was directed straight at Byfield and, in the 77th minute, Parselle’s cross from the left was flicked goalwards at the near post by Wilson, but Byfield saved low down.

Nick McCootie appeared to be extremely fortunate to receive only a yellow card from the referee, Mr. Craig Scriven, following his late lunge on Wright as the City keeper raced out of his box to clear. Tellingly, the former City striker was substituted almost immediately.

The remainder of the match saw the away side seeking a leveller, but the Taunton defence were dealing comfortably with any serious attacking threat. It was indicated that there would be six minutes of added time, but this was extended due to further injuries and general time wasting. Indeed, it was in the 97th minute that Bath thought they had scored when Cooke’s header was cleared on to the underside of the crossbar by Jay Foulston, with the City players vehemently claiming that the ball had crossed the line. The outcome was a corner kick on the right that was met by Fletcher at the near post, and his glancing header found its way into the far corner of the net, sparking wild scenes of joy both on the pitch and on the terraces behind the goal.

The final whistle came shortly afterwards to great acclaim, and relief, by the large travelling support in the crowd of 958. Whilst never a classic, the game was always keenly contested, and a draw was probably the fairest outcome. Once again, Jerry Gill’s men showed the benefit of determination, and demonstrated their refusal to accept defeat. They will now turn their attentions to the FA Cup and look to progress on Saturday when they entertain Sevenoaks Town at Twerton Park.

Taunton Town: Jack Bycroft, Joe Budd, Jay Foulston, Nick Grimes, Dan Ball, Jake Wannell, Ollie Chamberlain, Lloyd James, Nick McCootie, Joe Guest, Ross Stearn. Subs: Nat Jarvis, Zac Smith, Ross Staley, Dave Sims-Burgess, Lee Lucas.

Bath City: Joe Wright, Dan Hayfield, Jordan Dyer, Jack Batten, Kieran Parselle, Luke Spokes, James Morton (Chris Lines 71), Rex Mannings, (Scott Wilson 59) Tom Smith (Elliott Frear 65), Alex Fletcher, Cody Cooke. Subs not used: Ryan Clarke.

Referee: Mr. Craig Scrivens.

Attendance: 958.
Kelston Koppite
Kelston Koppite

Posts : 291
Join date : 2014-02-23

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