Beer Albion 1st’s 5-2 Dawlish Utd
Table-topping Beer Albion notched their seventh consecutive Premier Division victory, comfortably defeating Dawlish United 5-2 at the Furzebrake last Saturday. Beer were the better side throughout but for 70 minutes they had to work hard to keep the advantage. But the Fishermen finished strongly and won comfortably in the end.
Beer were missing 3 players due to injury and suspension, but thanks to the efforts of the team managers Mark Rooke and Jamie Bond the club currently has strength in depth to provide quality cover. For this game Beer were also able to call on Finley Rooke who has featured for Willand Rovers this season. Dawlish started well against Beer’s 5-3-2 formation. They had some skilful individuals and were strong in the tackle. They took the lead in the 6th minute when their midfielder was given too much time and his speculative strike from 35 yards out dipped into the top corner. This early setback did not phase Beer who began to dominate the play. The Fishermen did spurn a couple of early early chances and although they were passing the ball well across the back line, they were too eager to find the “killer” ball and therefore conceded possession too often. The equaliser came when, after a typically mazy dribble, Giles Basson was upended in the penalty area. Liam Cox calmly despatched the penalty to make the score 1-1.
Despite not being at their best, Beer continued to press and went 2-1 ahead on 37 minutes. From Cox’s well-struck free kick, Rooke’s header thudded against the crossbar and Tony Pinder was on hand to tuck home the rebound. Beer had deputy keeper Charley Ledger to thank on 42 minutes when he made a superb save to deny the visitors. But seconds away from half time Dawlish were level at 2-2 when their striker scored after Beer’s defence had failed to clear a loose ball. Beer played much better after the break showing more patience in possession, got much tighter on their opponents and they were winning second balls more frequently. The Fishermen were soon rewarded when Charley Skilton was denied by the Dawlish keeper after a driving run into the box but the rebound was gathered by Chris Long who pick his spot and fired the ball past the defenders on the line. Dawlish had their moments in the second half but the Beer defence held up well. After a couple of penalty appeals for tackles on the elusive Basson were turned down, Beer eventually sealed the result the 72nd minute with the goal of the match. George Harwood made good ground down the left and played the ball inside to Skilton who in turn drove a fine pass to Pinder. The Beer forward took the ball on his chest, turned and fired the ball into the bottom corner. Beer were now stroking the ball round with ease and unsurprisingly scored again on 87th minutes. Long ran onto a through ball and passed to the unmarked Basson who slid the ball past the keeper’s despairing. This was essentially another fine team performance and not easy to pick out individual stand-out performances. But manager Rooke had special praise for Tony Pinder and Giles Basson for their goals and link-up play which continues to blossom. Beer Reserves suffered their 1st league defeat of the season losing 5-2 at Exmouth Spartans. Due to calls on the 1st team, unavailability of their regular keepers and injuries, the Fishermen were without 5 key players. strength. Nonetheless they led 2-0 after 40 minutes , but a catalogue of errors presented the home side with 5 goals and the 3 points. Two consolations for the Fishermen were that Alex Paget had an outstanding game and that they still head the Division 2 Table! Next Saturday, Beer 1st’s are in Devon Premier Cup action away at Devon Football League outfit, Watcombe Wanderers. Beer 2nd’s will be hoping to get back to winning ways at home against Exeter University 4th’s. Kick off at the Furzebrake is at the earlier time of 2:15 pm and the match sponsor is Clinton Devon Estates.