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Winchester 3 Paulton Rovers 2

on Sun 11 Dec

Winchester twice came from behind to beat Paulton Rovers 3-2 and move up to 14th in the table.  The only changes to the team from Tuesday's win at Fleet saw Brendan Norris come in for Lewis Noice who prior to this had played in every first team game, and Adam Tomasso replacing Adam Roberts with the two replaced players filling the role of substitute.

 

Early on Winchester's Howard Neighbour hit the outside of the post, but in the 15th minute Reeko Best broke clear of the Winchester defence and slot home.

 

A free kick from Andy Jenkinson involved the Paulton saving, but being unable to hold on to the ball, but although Winchester were able to get in a cross the ball was cleared.  However Winchester did draw level in the 28th minute when Jenkinson set up Feeney who was able to break clear of the away defence to score.

 

Feeney was always a threat to the Paulton defence and he had another chance, but this time the goalkeeper was comfortably able to save his shot.  Stuart Green also had a shot saved, but at the other end a free kick from Jake Mawford resulted in Norris tipping his effort round the post for a corner.

 

Paulton certainly looked pacy up front and Best again broke clear of the Winchester defence and put the ball past the goalkeeper, but this time Stuart Mott was on hand to clear n the nick of time.

 

On the stroke of half time Winchester's hopes received a boost when a strong challenge from Jordan Ricketts on Adam Tomasso resulted in the referee immediately reaching for his red card and the visitors were down to 10 men.

 

At the start of the second half Winchester dominated possession and forced the visitors to defend deeply at times, but although they had a couple of half chances they were unable to break through and in the 59th minute against the run of play Paulton broke from defence and a penalty was awarded for a foul on Mawford which Mawford himself converted.

 

Winchester continued to press for a furher goal, but after a couple of near misses a nice flick by Howard Neighbour following a cross from Joe Briggs midway through the half levelled the scores.

 

Although it was not all one way traffic Winchester so nearly scored a third.  Craig Feeney hit the underside of the bar, Adam Tomasso and substitute Adam Roberts both forced saves from Kieran Hodges and a powerful shot from Stuart Green was just off target.

 

However with nine minutes to go Winchester finally took the lead for the first time in a match played in persistent rain, when great perseverance from Green in keeping the ball in resulted in Joe Briggs scoring the all important goal.

 

Paulton though kept battling and it required a goal-line clearance and an important interception by Robbie Matthews and a save from Norris to keep them out.

 

After Wednesday's home game with Yate, Winchester travel to Bideford on Saturday and on the following Wednesday are at home to Slimbridge.

 

After the game players and club members attended a Christmas meal prepared by the club's resident cooks with Judy Malone, Judith Towerton, Margaret Moody and Sally Statham receiving flowers for their efforts and all the players wearing fancy dress and many people wore Christmas jumpers for the occasion.  On Friday there is a further Christmas celebration at The Queen in Winchester.