Woeful Dorchester sunk by Dolphins

BY David Williams: Dorset Echo Sport


A desperately disappointing Dorchester were no match for Poole last night as the visitors moved to the top of the Evo-Stik Southern Premier Division following their 5-1 romp at the Avenue.

Captain Will Spetch set the ball rolling for the Dolphins with a close-range header before Jamie White, twice, Michael Walker and Luke Roberts all got their names on the scorehseet.

The defeat for the Magpies was their third on the bounce in the league and fourth in all competitions – Poole had also beaten the county town outfit in the Red Insure Cup a week earlier.

Dorchester remained unchanged from the side that started Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at St Neots.

Player-boss Mark Jermyn came back after suspension to take a place on the bench, while Matt Oldring and new signing Liam Sayers were also among the substitutes.

Striker Sayers, who joined the Magpies on an initial month-long youth loan deal from Portsmouth before the game, was previously part of the Dorchester Town Academy under Alex Browne.

Meanwhile, Poole boss Tom Killick also named an unchanged starting XI, and bench, following his side’s 3-0 victory over Cirencester at the weekend.

That meant former Magpie Michael Walker lined up against his brother Nathan.

And it was another ex-county town player, Steve Devlin, who had the first shot on target. His stinging effort from the edge of the box was straight at keeper Shane Murphy but the home gloveman had to punch it away.

The hosts hit back and good blocks by Poole stopper Nick Hutchings and captain Jamie Whisken denied Jonah Ayunga and Bradley Tarbuck.

A big bug bear of Jermyn earlier in the season was the number of goals his side were conceding from set-pieces.

And with 15 minutes gone Dorchester’s demons came back to haunt them as the Dolphins took the lead from a Devlin corner.

It wasn’t the cleanest of finishes from Spetch but the Poole defender got the touch that mattered to bundle the visitors in front.

White might have doubled Poole’s advantage soon after but Murphy was quick off his line to deny the striker.

Poole’s midfield posed more questions before the break and White was only denied by a linesman’s flag after dinking the ball over Murphy.

Despite trailing, Dorchester were still in the game, however, in the space of four minutes their hopes of turning things around went up in smoke.

On 35 minutes, Luke Burbidge laid the ball off to White to blast past Murphy for 2-0, and then a Devlin free-kick driven in low from the angle of the Magpies’ box nestled in the back of the net.

The goal was awarded to Michael Walker but a Dorchester player could well have had the final touch.

And the hosts’ night went from bad worse just five minutes into the second half – and the Dolphins’ fourth goal came from another set-piece. Devlin’s corner ricocheted off Nathan Walker, dropped to White, and he did the rest with a close-range finish.

With only pride to play for, the home side made a double change with Jermyn and Nick Crittenden replacing Lewis Morgan and Neil Martin.

Dorchester kept plugging away in the hope of at least a consolation but Poole were content to sit deep and then break on the counter-attack.

The match then became fragmented as both sides made substitutions and three yellow cards were dished out in as many minutes. The last of those was shown to home skipper Jake Smeeton and from the resulting free-kick Roberts was afforded far too much space before firing past Murphy.

A sixth for the Dolphins nearly arrived courtesy of full-back Lewis Tallack but Murphy diverted his shot around the post for a corner.

With the home fans making their feelings clear with chants of ‘what a load of rubbish’, a clever back-heel by substitute Sayers found Tarbuck and he smashed the ball into the roof of the net deep in injury time.

All in all, a woeful night for the Magpies and one they will want to forget in a hurry.

Magpies: Murphy, Hanger, Smeeton, Martin (Crittenden 56), Walker, Dillon, Davis, Morgan (Jermyn 56), Ayunga (Sayers 67), Watson, Tarbuck. Subs not used: Walker-Harris, Oldring

Poole: Hutchings, Tallack, Spetch, Walker, Whisken, Pettefer, Burbidge (Moore 53), Devlin, White (Holmes 67), Roberts (Connell 76), Dickson. Subs not used: Rees, Lindsay

Bookings: Magpies – Martin (foul, 23), Davis (foul, 69), Smeeton (foul, 72)

Poole – Spetch (dissent, 70)