CLOUD NINE FOR SOARING GULLS AF­TER LATE SHOW

The Non-League Football Paper - - SATURDAY MATCH CENTRE - By John Lawrence

LATE goals from Jamie Reid and Saikou Jan­neh ex­tended Torquay’s un­beaten league run to nine games and lifted the Devon side up to third in the ta­ble.

But they didn’t have things their own way against a de­ter­mined Dul­wich side in front of a bumper crowd.

Torquay boss Gary John­son said: “I was pleased with the re­sult, although I felt we could have played better.

“Dul­wich con­trib­uted to a well-con­tested game and it was nice to keep a clean sheet with [keeper] Shaun MacDon­ald do­ing well.”

Dul­wich al­most scored within 20 sec­onds of kick­off when Gavin Tom­lin got free in the box but he de­layed his shot and a de­fender made a timely block.

Torquay grad­u­ally grew into the game and af­ter Con­nor Le­mon­heigh-Evans tested Pre­ston Ed­wards from 25 yards, Jan­neh fired across goal from a nar­row an­gle.

As play went from end to end, a low cross from Dul­wich’s Sanchez Ming eluded Tom­lin and later a vi­tal tackle by Kyle Cameron thwarted An­thony Cook.

For Torquay, Reid went close from 20 yards be­fore Jake An­drews shot into the side net­ting.

Ham­let had the better chances in the early part of the sec­ond half. Torquay keeper Shaun MacDon­ald made an ex­cel­lent block to deny Nyren Clu­nis who was later brought down just out­side the box.

Chieck Toure also had a close-range ef­fort blocked on the line. Then, from Ash­ley Carew’s free-kick, a goal­bound header from Michael Cham­bers was su­perbly pushed away by the div­ing MacDon­ald.

As the half pro­gressed, Torquay be­gan to gain the up­per hand and should have scored on 67 min­utes when Calvin Kalala em­barked on a surg­ing run down the left only to shoot wide when he found him­self with only Ed­wards to beat.

But United broke the dead­lock three min­utes later. Play con­tin­ued af­ter Ham­let skip­per Mag­nus Okuong­hae lay in­jured in the box and when the ball came in from the left, Ruairi Keat­ing’s ef­fort was blocked be­fore Reid crashed home from ten yards.

Then, on 78 min­utes, the Gulls dou­bled their lead when an un­der­hit back­pass from Ibrahim Kargbo was in­ter­cepted by Jan­neh who gave Ed­wards no chance.

Ham­let never gave up, how­ever, and forced MacDon­ald to make two cru­cial saves in stop­page time.

First, he blocked from Dip Akinyemi at point­blank range, then made an ex­cel­lent leap to tip Nathan Fer­gu­son’s header.

Ham­let’s Gavin Rose com­mented: “Torquay are the best team we’ve played this sea­son but I was dis­ap­pointed he didn’t cap­i­talise on some good op­por­tu­ni­ties es­pe­cially in the first half.

“I didn’t feel there was much dif­fer­ence in qual­ity but Torquay’s men­tal­ity was su­pe­rior.”

STAR MAN: Shaun MacDon­ald (Torq’y) ENTERTAINMENT: ★★★★★

PICTURES: Dun­can Palmer

CLOSE EN­COUNTER: Dul­wich’s An­thony Cook is chal­lenged by Torquay de­fend­ers

YELLOW FEVER: Torquay cel­e­brate Jamie Reid’s opener

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