Dorchester Town hit by Met Police fightback

BY: Neil Walton – Dorset Echo Sport (@EchosportNeil)


DORCHESTER Town saw a 1-0 half-time lead overturned as Metropolitan Police claimed a deserved 2-1 victory in their Evo-Stik Southern Premier South clash at Imber Court.

Antonio Diaz had opened the scoring on 30 minutes but the Blues strengthened either side of the interval.
Oliver Knight and sub Jonathan Hippolyte sealed the win as the Met dominated the second period.

The defeat was the visitors’ first on the road since a 4-1 loss to Harrow in mid-October for a Dorchester side freshened up with two changes to the starting XI that began the 3-0 loss to Swindon Supermarine last time out.

Callum Rose came in for the injured Josh Bailey, who was stretchered off against Marine with a serious knee problem, while Ben Seymour took his place up front after serving a three-game ban.

The Exeter loanee, now with nine goals in 10 games, replaced Tom Blair, who had five in three in an example of the selection headache posed for boss Steve Thompson.

However, there was no room in the matchday squad for new signing Brennan Camp, signed from Bournemouth on work experience terms 24 hours before the game as cover for Bailey.

Ash Pope, Josh Williams and Mike Edgar also missed out from the squad completely, with the bench comprising of Tom Blair, Nick Hutchings, Luke Winsper and Aaron Rodriguez.

After a frantic opening to the game Dorchester, who were seeking a fourth successive away league victory, forced panic in the Blues’ penalty area.

With the hosts failing to deal with a corner, several ricochets failed to land kindly for a Dorchester man in the six-yard box and Police eventually hacked the ball clear.

Met Police, who began the match in fifth position and topped the league’s form table with four wins from five games, then carved out a half-chance for Bayley Mummery.

A cross, driven low and hard by Knight, evaded the Magpies’ defence but was too strong for Mummery.
After picking up an injury, Mummery was then replaced in the 22nd minute by Hippolyte.

Following the substitution, there was a brief lull until Dorchester took the lead courtesy of Diaz, who scored his fifth goal in six games.

Diaz picked the ball up in a counter attack and offloaded to Seymour, the striker gathering the ball and in a whipping in a low cross for Diaz to slide home from close range.

Predictably, the Met hounded the Magpies for an equaliser with heavy pressure but could not break through and their frustrations were encapsulated when Knight was booked by referee Robson for a late challenge.

Shortly after, the Blues produced their best chance of the half when a ball from the left supplied Luke Robertson but the midfielder’s effort failed to trouble Kingsley Latham in the Dorchester goal.

Neil Martin was then unluckily cautioned for what Robson deemed a deliberate handball but justice was served before half-time when the Blues’ free-kick left Dorchester unharmed.

More home pressure flooded onto the Magpies with two quick chances soon after the restart.

Max Blackmore, the Blues’ second-top scorer this season behind Jack Mazzone, laced an effort straight at the alert Latham, whose excellent form continued, before Jeremy Arthur volleyed over after a good cross stemming from out wide.

But Police’s endeavours soon conjured a goal after a breathless minute of play.

Goalkeeper Thomas Williams released Hippolyte on the right and his cross fed Blackmore who shot narrowly wide before the Blues won possession and teed up Knight to steer an unstoppable drive into the top-right corner for a deserved leveller.

With Dorchester offering little in response to the barrage of attacks, John Gilbert was the next Met player to test Latham, the Southampton loanee getting down well to push the forward’s effort around the post.

On 80 minutes, Dorchester only had themselves to blame as a defensive error gifted an opportunity to Hippolyte who beat Latham with aplomb to complete the turnaround.

Knight should have added his second of the game when he raced clean through but elected for power and subsequently blazed his attempt over the bar and out of the stadium.

Police held on for victory to claim fourth spot, while Dorchester slipped to 18th.

Met Police: T Williams, Webb, Guinness-Walker, Robinson, Arthur, Birch, Knight (Fisher 90+3), Robertson, Mummery (Hippolyte 22), Blackmore, Gilbert (Murdoch 75). Subs not used: Torpey, McLaughlin

Magpies: Latham, Egan, Martin, Rose, Carmichael, Kite, Murray (Winsper 79), Lowes (Rodriguez 82), Seymour, Diaz (Blair 74), Jackson. Sub not used: Hutchings

Referee: Craig Robson

Attendance: 115