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TERRAS: Burbidge saves Weymouth's blushes against nine-man Poole
5:33pm Monday 26th August 2013 in Sport
POOLE TOWN 2
(Gillespie 59, 63)
(Yetton 45, Burbidge 78)
LUKE Burbidge struck against his former club to save Weymouth’s blushes at Tatnam this afternoon.
The Terras were below par for much of the contest and almost got caught out against a Poole Town side that had two men dismissed during a frantic second half.
Dorchester-based referee Mark Derrien dished out controversial red cards to both Steve Devlin and goalkeeper Nick Hutchings but despite the double setback the hosts refused to buckle.
Not only did they come back from a goal down to lead 2-1 with 10 men, but they then held on for 25 minutes with nine to claim a well-earned draw.
Once again the Terras named an unchanged starting XI for the fourth game in succession with Simon Evans, Kyle Critchell, Jamie Symes and former Poole skipper Michael Walker all still missing through injury.
There were also several former Weymouth players in the Dolphins’ squad including Sam Clarke and Carl Preston, who both started the game, and Warren Byerley, who was on the bench.
Sam Poole headed wide for the Terras from an early corner but apart from that the opening exchanges of this local derby match were scrappy, with both teams struggling to settle.
Poole were the more threatening side with Preston looking particularly lively down the left flank, but in terms of chances there was not much happening at either end.
Home winger Ekow Elliott eventually tested Jason Matthews from 20 yards on the half-hour and a corner almost fell kindly for Nathan Walker at the other end, but apart from that it was pretty dour stuff.
Poole then thought they had broken the deadlock on 40 minutes when Will Spetch tucked home a free-kick at the far post but the celebrations were short lived due to an offside flag.
Apart from the odd set piece, Weymouth had produced very little but on the stroke of half-time they snatched the lead.
A short corner saw Scott Walker deliver the ball into a crowded penalty area and there was Stewart Yetton to force the ball into the net with the help of a lucky ricochet.
That was tough luck on Poole and to make matters worse they then had Steve Devlin sent off just four minutes into the second half.
The former Dorchester Town man raised his boot in a challenge with Danny Clay but Derrien’s decision to brandish a straight red card did look a little harsh.
A booking would have sufficed but the official clearly deemed the incident as violent conduct.
Poole made a double switch not long after that, bringing on Richard Gillespie and Marvin Brooks, and that certainly upped the tempo with Preston firing wide at one end and Yetton and Ben Joyce going close at the other.
A goal was clearly on the cards and it eventually came on 59 minutes when Brooks picked out Gillespie, who nonchalantly flicked the ball home to the delight of the home fans.
The Terras looked completely flabbergasted and just four minutes later they were picking the ball out of the net again.
This time Dan Cann was the architect with a fine ball through to Gillespie, who once again applied a cool finish to send his side into a 2-1 lead.
Celebrating his 500th game in charge at Tatnam, Tommy Killick must have thought he had just made the best double switch of his managerial career, but his delight soon turned to frustration once again.
Attempting to take the sting out of the game on 65 minutes, Hutchings picked up a booking for time wasting at a goal-kick, but instead of just accepting it he foolishly gave Derrien a sarcastic pat on the head.
The official immediately took exception to the keeper’s behaviour and after a few more words were exchanged, brandished a second yellow card and then a red to the disbelief of the Poole faithful.
Everyone now expected a Weymouth onslaught in the closing stages but it never really materialised despite throwing on an extra forward in Matt Groves.
The Terras had played poorly all afternoon and it was only a piece of individual brilliance that saved them, when Burbidge cut in from the right and lashed a 20-yard shot past substitute goalkeeper Dan Thomas with just 12 minutes to go.
Other than that and a couple of penalty shouts the visitors created very little with their two extra men.
Groves went down under a challenge from Thomas and there was also a late appeal for handball following a corner, but on both occasions Derrien waved play on before eventually sounding the final whistle.
Poole thoroughly deserved their point but the Terras were far from their best and on another day could have well come away empty handed.
Poole: Hutchings, Clarke, Spetch, Oliver (Brooks 53), Whisker, Pettefer, Elliott (Gillespie 53), Devlin, Davies (Thomas 67), Preston, Cann. Subs not used: Byerley, Davis.
Weymouth: Matthews, Poole, N Walker, McConnell, S Walker, Clay, Joyce, Burbidge, Wood (Groves 71), Ford, Yetton. Subs not used: Tewkesbury, Wells, Chainey, Winsper.
Bookings – Poole: Hutchings (unsporting behaviour 65), (dissent 65)
Weymouth: Poole (foul 71)
Dismissals – Poole: Devlin (violent conduct 49), Hutchings (two bookings 65).
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