Improved Dorchester share spoils with Centurions

BY: Josh Donaldson Dorset Echo Sport


Dorchester Town were unlucky not to come away with a win as they drew 2-2 with Cirencester Town in a breathless encounter at the Avenue.

Liam Sayers spurned two chances and David Jerrard hit the bar after he had taken a 2-1 lead for the hosts just before the hour mark.

Before that Charlie Griffin scored from the spot in the first half to take the lead for the Centurions only for Nathan Walker to level in the 28th minute.

After Jerrard had taken the lead for the Magpies, Cirencester’s substitute Ross Langworthy equalised for the away side as the sides shared the spoils

The county town side made three changes to the side that lost to Chesham United last weekend.

Mark Jermyn, returning after the birth of his son Hugo, Walker and Chris Dillon were all back in the line-up as the hosts looked to keep Cirencester at bay.

But, it was the Centurions who took the lead in the 13th minute.

Jake Smeeton was judged to foul James Mortimer-Jones in the box with a push in the back. Although there was contact, the decision seemed harsh. Regardless, Griffin stepped up to slot the spot-kick home, sending Shane Murphy the wrong way.

The Magpies have fallen behind in every one of their league games so far this season, and they responded well. Matt Oldring nearly levelled after he deflected Jerrard’s effort just wide midway through the first half.

The Magpies had gone two minutes shy of five hours without a goal when Walker netted to equalise for the home side.

Lee’s free-kick from 20 yards out cannoned off the bar but the ball fell to Smeeton who drove it into the box.

The effort found the central defender and he made no mistake.

Matt Liddiard made sure the hosts’ fans couldn’t celebrate for too long as he forced the home goalkeeper into a fine save.

Dorchester ended the half the stronger and kept up that momentum after the break.

They were rewarded in the 58th minute when Jerrard found some room in the box to slot past Rivers.

Mario Mateus then had an effort saved by the Centurions’ goalkeeper as the Magpies pressed on, looking to double their lead.

However it was the visitors who scored next. Rangworthy, with his first touch of the game, stole in behind the hosts’ backline to slide his shot underneath Murphy seven minutes after the visitors had gone behind.

The goal only seemed to spur the home side on as Liam Sayers missed two decent opportunities.

With time running out, the game was finely poised as both sides went in search of a winner.

Griffin went close for the visitors and Rivers was quick to deny Mateus from getting onto a Lee cross for the hosts.

The tension was palpable as the game entered its final stages with the hosts camped in Cirencester’s half.

Jerrard thought he had won it with a dipping 25-yard effort, only to see it cannon off the bar.

Two more chances came and went for the hosts late on but they couldn’t find a way through, meaning both sides had to settle for a point, in what was Dorchester’s best performance of the campaign.

Magpies: Murphy, Oldring, Smeeton, Jermyn, N Walker, Dillon (Yates 77), Jerrard, Martin, Lee, Mateus, Sayers

Subs not used: Swann, B Walker, Ayunga, Brookes

Cirencester: Rivers, Bennett, Bevan, Coates, Liddiard, Brown, Taylor, Mortimer-Jones, Griffin (Lapham 89), Smith (Rangworthy 63), Knight (Connolly 90+2)

Subs not used: Else, Youngsam

Bookings: Magpies ­– Oldring, Jermyn, Martin

Cirencester – Coates, Brown

Attendance: 301

Referee: Iain Parsons