Match Report: Tiverton Town 2-2 Basingstoke Town Saturday 5th August 2023

Southern League Premier South Division – Saturday 5th August 2023
Tiverton Town 2 v 2 Basingstoke Town Attendance TBC
Where: The Ian Moorcroft Stadium, Bolham Road, Tiverton. EX16 6SG
Dan Brownlie’s line-up for the opening game of the season was: 1. Mark Scott, 2. Kai Hobbs, 3. Markus Johnson-Schuster, 4. Michael Atkinson, 5. Billy Upton, 6. Nathan Smart, 7. Bradley Wilson, 8. Simon Dunn (Capt), 9. Paul Hodges, 10. Ashleigh Artwell, 11. Dan Isaiah Rowe
On the bench: D’Andre Brown, James Clark, Morrison Hashii, Scott Armstrong & Sam Argent
Referee – Martin Bloor

Despite a large contingent of Basingstoke fans making the trip by car, train and coach down to Devon, the attendance was a dismal one, for this opening game of the season in bright sunshine, and it was Stoke who were first on the attack winning a corner down the left. Nothing came from it.

Michael Atkinson on eight minutes then went on a weaving run deep into Tiverton’s half, turning his defender inside and out, before sending over a cross, come shot, that flies inches wide of the far post.

Stoke continued to push forward and on eighteen minutes a need move down the right saw Dan Rowe get pulled down on the edge of the penalty area, near the byline. The Tiverton defender went in the book, whilst Bradley Wilson set to the kick. The kick swung the ball across the heart of the goalmouth, with Billy Upton beating his markers as he powered home his header into the roof of the net. GOAL! Tiverton Town 0 – 1 Basingstoke Town (Upton 21 mins)

Stoke continued to push forward over the next period of play, but included Simon Dunn picking up what seems an ankle injury, and is replaced by D’Andre Brown on 34 minutes.

Tiverton apart from an occasional foray into our half, rarely troubled us as the game pushed into the final few minutes of the half.

Then from deep in our half a long ball found Wilson in space with the ball, as he entered the penalty area, but his shot is palmed away by the keeper for a corner.

Tiverton then have two attacks, with a cross from the left, that flied past the face of the goal and out for a goal-kick. The other a cross and a header that flies wide of the far post.

Kai Hobbs is the first Stoke player to go in the book after throwing the ball away after a free-kick.
Then deep into added time Ashleigh Artwell receives the ball on the edge of the penalty area, and he weaves his way past one then two defenders then appears to be clipped as he enters the penalty area, but the referee waves away any penalty claims.

A minute later the referee blows the halftime whistle and Stoke go into the break with a deserved lead.
Halftime – Tiverton Town 0 v 1 Basingstoke Town
The second-half got underway, as a quick shower swept across the ground, and Stoke appear to be the team back on top in the first few minutes.

We then break from deep in our half through Hodges, who beats two defenders as he takes it over the halfway line, then finds Kai Hobbs in acres of space as he closes in on the penalty area. Hobbs then rather taking the shot, clips the ball back over to where Hodges has run, and his flying kick flies harmlessly over the bar.
Stoke continue to resist anything Tiverton to do in our half over the next few minutes, and continue to look for the second goal.

Artwell then neatly finds Rowe, who breaks down the right, but is tackled just as he enters the penalty area, but Artwell neatly retrieves the ball and takes the ball into the area and then hits a shot that the keeper sticks a leg out to that rebounds to Michael Atkinson who slams the ball into the roof of the net. GOAL! Tiverton Town 0 – 2 Basingstoke Town (Atkinson 60 mins)

Tiverton look to get back in the game, but good defensive work by Markus Johnson-Schuster, is then wasted as another Stoke player loses the ball. Tiverton are then able to send over a cross to the far post where they appear to have an extra attacker who heads home into the net. Tiverton 1 – 2 Basingstoke Town.

We then make our second change with Sam Argent replacing Ashleigh Artwell.
Then within seconds of the restart, Tiverton have the ball in our half and a long-range shot beats Scott in goal, and Tiverton have pulled level. Tiverton 2-2 Basingstoke Town.

Argent makes his presence known with two strong defensive headers over the next few minutes.

Tiverton buoyed by their equaliser, are now the team looking for the winning goal, and Stoke are now having to defend deep.

Stoke then make our third and final change with Morrison Hashii replacing Dan Rowe (80 mins).
The game is now in the last few minutes, with neither team able to find that all-important third goal.
The referee plays four minutes of added-time, then blows the final whistle and both teams start the season with a point.

Full-time Score: Tiverton Town 2 v 2 Basingstoke Town
Jones 65 mins, Allen 71 mins                Upton 21 mins, Atkinson 60 mins

Match Thought’s
Well there are two ways to look at yesterday’s result. A strong hour of play and our first point of the season won on the road, or two points dropped after taking a dominating lead against what seemed to many was a poor Tiverton side. An injury to Simon Dunn? Rumours that Paul Hodges is off for four weeks, and player of the match, Dan Rowe, Michael Atkinson? All thoughts to be discussed.
Up Next:
Next Saturday we host Hanwell Town for our first league game at Winklebury with a 3pm KO

Match Report by Martin French..