Devon and Exeter League: North Tawton 1, Wellington Reserves 5

The Reserves got their season underway with an emphatic away win in Devon.

Not knowing too much about their opponents due to a geographical league reshuffling, Wellington knew the early exchanges would be crucial and they would need to come out of the blocks quickly. Indeed they did.

Wellington got on top from the whistle. With good passing spells in possession and quick closing down without, they soon had Tawton on the back foot. After a couple of early near misses, Wellington unsurprisingly took the lead on nine minutes. Tom Davies headed down for Josh Baker to run onto and hit a neat first time low near post finish. Three minutes later it was 2-0. A deep Wes Poulsom corner found the feet of Davies who fired in a rasping shot which resulted in an own goal for Welly and a second assist of the day for Davies.

Wellington were well on top and made the score 3-0 on 17 minutes. Again Davies was involved. A huge commanding header in the middle of the pitch found its way through to the alert Liam Thorne. He broke through unchallenged before firing clinically past the helpless home keeper.

The rest of the half passed without any real issues for Wellington. North Tawton reshuffled and gathered themselves after their early mauling and managed to keep Wellington at bay until the half time whistle.

The start of the second half was much the same as the opening period. Wellington came back out determined to guarantee themselves the three points and an opening day win.

They quickly got on top and the scored the best of game on 48 minutes … and this time, Davies couldn’t claim the assist. From the back, skipper Mark Owen fed Wes Poulsom down the right, who played inside where some good quick interchanging passing from Brad Holmans, Clay Westcott and Rohan Poulsom led to Thorne getting his second, driving a low shot in off the far post.

Jake Nicholl and Ash Saunders replaced impressive debutant Logan Sellick and Holmans respectively on 55 and 60 minutes. Saunders made his introduction felt and soon claimed Wellington’s fifth goal after 70 minutes. Davies fired a direct long ball which the home defence failed to deal with and the ball fell to the busy Saunders who easily tapped home from close range.

The only blot on an otherwise fine display to start their season, was the disappointment of not claiming a clean sheet. A quick break in the 75th minute resulted in Rob Hall being beaten one on one at his near post.  The remaining 15 minutes were all Wellington, knocking the ball around nicely and creating chances at will. But no further goals were added.

All in all it was a very deserved opening win. But the lesson of the day was the need to remain focused and concentrated for the full 90 minutes. Wellington would have kept the clean sheet they wanted if they had.

On Saturday, the Reserves are home to Bow Athletic, who won their opening fixture 4-1. Kick-off will be 3pm. Please come along and support the lads, entrance is free!