Somerset Premier Cup: Larkhall Athletic 1, Wellington 0

A goal right at the death saw battling Wellington bow out of the Somerset Premier Cup at the quarter-finals stage in Bath last night (Wednesday, March 13th).

Despite being without a host of first team regulars, the Tangerines worked their socks off against Larkhall who play at a level above them in the South Division of the Southern League.

They were within three minutes of a penalty shootout when the hosts’ late winner foiled their hopes of landing a home semi-final against Taunton Town.

Wellington’s absentees included keeper Jake Viney, midfielder Sam Towler and winger Sully McKenna – all cup tied – while a number of others were unavailable for the rearranged tie.

The line-up included teenage keeper Charlie Hawkings, Danny Wordsworth making his first start and Connor Noble, their only sub, who came on after 32 minutes for the injured Gabriel Plant to make his first team debut.

Wellington played up the slope in the first half and defended magnificently with Larkhall’s only clearcut chance, in the 38th minute, seeing Matthew Bowman head wide.

It was a similar story after the break with the hosts repeatedly frustrated in their efforts to break the deadlock.

Wellington had an opening of their own on the hour when Glen Wright’s header was well saved by keeper Arthur Nasta.

They then came agonisingly close to taking a shock lead with nine minutes remaining as Ryan Brereton’s long range volley smacked against the bar with Nasta beaten.

While Larkhall introduced fresh legs from the bench, Wellington were unable to do the same and, in the closing stages, a number of players were struggling with either injuries or cramp as the heavy pitch took its toll.

However, just as it looked like they might hold out, their resistance was finally broken after 87 minutes.

The ball was played inside to Harvey Pritchard, Larkhall’s best player, and he skipped past a defender before drilling home the winner from 12 yards.

Although left disappointed by the result, the Tangerines can take heart from a gutsy performance ahead of their important Toolstation League game at home to Millbrook on Saturday.

Wellington: Charlie Hawkings, Mark Cornish, Kieran Bailey, Alex Cherry, Josh Young, Flynn Smith, Josh Lukins, Glen Wright, Danny Wordsworth, Gabriel Plant, Ryan Brereton. Substitute: Connor Noble (used).