North Worle vs Wrington Redhill Reserves
1 November 2014 2.00pm
The reserves extended their unbeaten start to the season to eight games in a scappy affair, but not without receiving a scare from fourth division side North Worle who deserve great credit for a battling second half in which they refused to lie down.
Manager Julian Moss made wholesale changes for this second consecutive cup game – former captain Nick Buck joined Dan Burnett and Louis Rouvrais in a complete change to the midfield from the previous outing. Alex Blake returned at the back alongside Phil Williams and Nick Curtis, whilst Dan McMullen earned his first start of the season, partnering Tom Johnson up front.
Given the extent of the changes, Wrington could have been excused for a marking a slow start, but in fact it was quite the opposite as Buck broke up play in midfield and set Rouvrais free to bury a firm finish past the Worle keeper inside 3 minutes.
The away side had spoken before the game about the threat posed by long balls given the small pitch and windy conditions, but were caught out by just that on 6 minutes, as Worle were allowed back into the game with a soft goal from the home side’s perspective, setting the tone for a torrid afternoon for both defences.
Wrington grew into the game as the half drew on, getting to grips with an uneven playing surface. Johnson resembled a zombie for much of the afternoon following a late night spent “Trick or Treating”, but treated Joe Moore to an opportunity on 25 minutes whose shot squirmed under the home keeper.
Moore turned provider 5 minutes later, with a delightful chip for Buck, who had ghosted through the middle of the defence to lob the on-rushing keeper with a cute finish, putting Wrington in control at the break.
As had been the case in the previous game, the half time break took the momentum away from Wrington as the away side started slowly. Now playing with the wind, Worle were back in the game after 5 second half minutes, as a nightmarish mix-up between Blake and Williams in dealing with another long ball gifted the simplest of finishes for the Worle forward. Scenting blood, Worle were level on 55 minutes as a shot from the edge of the box snuck under keeper Vowles.
Wrington’s response was immediate – retaking the lead within 20 seconds of the restart as Buck drove forward and turned provider for Moore to net his second of the afternoon with a smart finish. Worle were still not dead, however, as Wrington failed to deal with another long ball, allowing the home side to equalise with a fearsome finish.
Wrington finally exorcised their defensive demons to put the game safe – Rouvrais heading powerfully home from a Buck corner on 70 minutes, and Faulkner netting his first of the season on 80 minutes in a carbon-copy of Buck’s earlier goal as Moore added a second assist to his brace. Faulkner had moved up front as Olly Cozza replaced McMullen for his Wrington debut, nearly making a dream start with a shot that squirmed narrowly wide of the target. Following yet another hard-working performance, Faulkner picked up the man of the match award from the Wrington touchline.
The reserves now look ahead to a return to league action against Shipham in a fortnight, and were buoyed by the news that league challengers Nailsea had failed to make the most of their game in hand by slipping up against Winscombe, leaving Wrington clear at the top of the division.
FULL TIME North Worle 4-6 Wrington
Wrington: J. Vowles, Blake (Briggs), Williams (C), Curtis, Faulkner, Moore, Buck, Burnett, Rouvrais, McMullen (Cozza), Johnson.