Match Reports

Malmesbury Victoria 2 - 4 Bishops Lydeard
Les Phillips Cup

Saturday 26th August 2017

WA Clinical hat-trick from young Charlie Wilson paved the way for Bishops Lydeard to set up a first round tie at home to Portishead Town, after they got past a weakened but resolute Malmesbury Victoria at the Flying Monk Ground on Saturday afternoon writes Kerry Miller.

Despite at one point being 4-0 up, Lydeard were forced to defend and hang on after they lost Tom Stone to as red card and the home side scored twice and were all over Lydeard for large parts of an enthralling second half.

Malmesbury were without half their side through suspensions, injuries and no less than two stag weekends and the clubhouse was full of crutches and looked more like the green room from Holby City before the game. The warm day and good playing surface were conducive to attacking play and that is exactly how the game panned out as both sides went for it with no sign of the current disease of taking cup football easy.

Wilson was soon among the action when he almost charged down home keeper Adam Clatworthy’s clearance before, at the other end Keiran Jones shot over from a direct free-kick but Wilson was not to be denied as in the eighth minute a defensive error gave him time to move forward and shoot under Clatworthy to put Bishops Lydeard ahead.

Vics wasted two free-kicks from good positions then Bishops went looking for more as Jake Quick’s cross was just hacked away by Clatworthy and Callum Flaherty nodded over but Malmesbury hung on and at the other end Scott Reynolds long cross was just tipped over by Sam Carreau. The action was end to end and Jones drove wide for Vics then Wilson forced a fine save from Clatworthy but it could have gone pear shaped mid way through the half when, following a full on challenge home defender Josh Russell trod on the ankle of Ryan Andrews off the ball, but it was not picked up and was allowed to pass by the players, which was a bons as the game was very watchable.

On the half hour Russell’s lofted free-kick appeared to be heading in until it was cleared off the line from under his bar by Flaherty and Lydeard took advantage of the let of moments later when Luke Redrup’s superb cross to the far post was crashed home on the volley by Wilson to put his side 2-0 up. Vics then reacted well and Shane Bumfrey found the net but theMark Eburne’s offside flag was up. Eburne’s fellow linesman was called Bradley Marvell, who had a good game and sounds more like a Netflix superhero than a Western League official.

With Vics looking to half-time to regroup and lick their wounds, Quick was true to his name as he charged down another Clatworthy clearance and from wide out right Redrup’s inch perfect lob eluded everybody to nestle in the bottom cormer to make it 3-0 and seemingly close out the game with more than half of it left.

After the break Vics showed they were not going to conceded defeat and Sam Parker brought a fine save out of Carreau then Jamie Packer’s cross brought a bullet header from Ben Robinson which was inches away from a classic own goal. As they looked to get back into the game Parker had a header cleared off the line but all the hard work came to nothing minutes later when a long cross caused confusion in the home defence and Wilson crashed home the loose ball from 20 yards to complete his personal treble and make the score 4-0. Packed then crossed for Bumphrey whose free header over the bar was bad miss, but against all the odds the game took another turn with more than half an hour still to go. Parker wriggled clear on the egd of the area but was hauled back by Stone and referee Steven Benchley showed him the red card and Vics sniffed an outside chance.

Bumphrey then nodded into the empty net after good pressure from Packer and following a scrappy spell midway through the half Josh Hughes launched an audacious lob which may have been a cross but 45 yards out near the clubhouse it dropped in to make it 4-2 against the ten men with 15 minutes left.

Malmesbury still charged forward and teenage striker Joe Tranter brought a save out of Carreau late on but in the end Lydeard held on to take the win back down the M4 and M5 and prepare to travel to Bishops Sutton on Tuesday evening.

With the ever present possibility of flooding from the adjacent joint River Avons, Vics’ Flying Monk ground, which has been home for more than half a century, is vulnerable and the club are looking at some point to move to an area close by but on higher ground. It may be inevitable but until then spectators can still enjoy football at an attractive setting with fields behind one end and a tree-lined far side, the ground set off nicely by the home built wooden stand at the near end which is far easier on the eye than some of the off the shelf metal contraptions which are seen as an easy option at many other grounds.

The warm welcome from chairman Bernie Davies and secretary Brendon Rice set off the day nicely and although they lost the cup tie, with three wins and a draw from the opening six league games there is much for boss Kevin Bridgeman to work on when the missing half of his team return to action next Saturday when they entertain Cheddar.

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