Bovey and Stoke derby day
CARLSBERG SOUTH WEST PENINSULA LEAUE
WILL Small says his Bovey Tracey players will go into Saturday’s clash with Peninsula League Division One East title rivals Stoke Gabriel with confidence, at a time when they are playing some of their best football of the season.
A depleted Bovey side, with nine players unavailable, warmed up for this weekend’s crucial showdown with a 3-0 win at Crediton United in the second round of the Devon Premier Cup.
Dan Taylor scored twice on Saturday, with Sean Finch con- tinuing his rich vein of goalscoring form with another goal, adding to the four he scored against Budleigh Salterton and two in the midweek win against Teignmouth.
Looking ahead to Saturday, Small said: “It’s our biggest game of the season. We’ve had a good week with three wins and we will go into the game with confidence.”
Small will have the luxury of a full squad to choose from this weekend, though, as Bovey look to pull three points clear of Stoke and keep the pressure on leaders Elmore.
Ollie Alpin returns to face his former club after he was cup-tied for Saturday’s Premier Cup tie.
Ryan Stanbridge and Owen Stockton are also back in the squad following suspension, while Cliff Walters, Ryan Batley and Gavin Collins are available after missing the Crediton game.
Second-placed Bovey are four points behind leaders Elmore, but have three games in hand, and are level on points with third in the table Stoke.
Small said: “There is a long, long way to go but it would be a massive three points on Saturday.
Stoke will be looking to bounce back after they were knocked out of the Devon Premier Cup by North Devon Premier Division side Braunton on Saturday.
In one of the shocks of the round, the tie was goalless until Toby Bennett struck seven minutes from time.
And as Stoke sent their goalkeeper up for a corner in the dying moments, the visitors were caught out on the break and Bennett was left with the easy task of rolling the ball into an empty net.
Elsewhere, Teignmouth were also knocked out of the competition after losing 1-0 at Elmore – in a tie which produced five red cards. Elmore ended the game with nine men, with Teignmouth finishing with eight in a highly-charged cup tie at Horsdon Park.
Elmore’s Jordan Casey was shown a red card in injury time for dissent, just minutes after Ashley Matthews’ dramatic winner.
Daniel Tapp was also sent off after just 18 minutes following a melee which also resulted in two Hayden Roe and Scott Baxter being being dismissed for Teignmouth. And after Matthews had struck three minutes from time, Teignmouth were reduced to eight men when Ben Ashford was red carded for a bad challenge.
There was still time for one more red when Casey was sent off for foul and abusive language.