CAPTAIN Jack Bray-Evans praised the immense spirit shown by Newquay AFC who beat Exmouth Town 3-2 away despite playing with just nine men.    &..." />
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News Archive > Sport > Newquay win with nine men

Newquay win with nine men

By Tom Howe 25th October 2017

Newquay win with nine men
SENT OFF: Newquay attacker Tornado Bello, seen here discussing a decision with a referee in pre-season, saw red against Exmouth Town

CAPTAIN Jack Bray-Evans praised the immense spirit shown by Newquay AFC who beat Exmouth Town 3-2 away despite playing with just nine men.                      

The Peppermints defied all the odds to pick up their eighth win from 13 South West Peninsula Premier League fixtures, doubling their tally for the entirety of last season, when they avoided relegation on a technicality - with Tiverton Town Reserves withdrawing from the division.

With the game under threat due to the adverse effect caused by Storm Brian, Newquay embarked on the 200-mile round trip and were forced to pull over halfway up following rumours of the match being called off. However, they proved to be untrue and Newquay’s lightning start mirrored the fierce conditions at the King George V Ground. Tornado Bello gave them an eighth minute lead but their joy was short lived as defender Nelson Eseleghe was dismissed in the 19th minute for tugging on the shirt of Dean Billingsley.

Despite going a man down, the Peppermints increased their lead some eight minutes later when Bray-Evans made a great run through the middle before rounding the goalkeeper and putting the ball into an empty net. Martin Finneron pulled one back for Exmouth and, to make matters even more precarious, Bello received his second yellow card just after half-time for encroachment at a free-kick, meaning Newquay had to defend their lead with only nine men on the pitch.

The resulting set-piece led to Exmouth finding an equaliser through Ace High. A closely-fought contest ensued until, with just five minutes remaining, Newquay snatched victory with a shot from Bray-Evans which ricocheted off 39-year-old former Godolphin Atlantic attacker Richard Griffin, making his full debut for the club, and found its way into the Exmouth goal.

Bray-Evans, who played alongside debutant striker Tyler Cheshire, a recent signing from Sticker, said: “As a team we couldn't really believe the game was going to actually be played.

Driving up conditions were awful but the actual ground wasn't bad and the pitch held up well.

We took an early lead after I put Tornado through to finish nicely. We then went 2-0 up with 10 men after I ran from my own half with the ball, rounded the ‘keeper and slotted home.

“They scored to make it 2-1 before half-time. Almost immediately after half-time Tornado got a second yellow and we were down to nine men with Exmouth then scoring with the resulting free-kick.

“From then on it was backs against the wall. They committed men forward but we managed to see out all their threats and play on the counter attack. Our winning goal came late on when Dan O’Hagan headed down to me on the edge of the box, I dragged a shot that hit ‘Griff’ in the shin and went in to win us the game.

“Not a beautiful goal but an important one and three points. The team bond and spirit proved strong yet again and despite the difficulties we faced we still managed to get the job done in an emphatic fashion.”

The win was marred by the double sending off, which will now bring about two unhelpful suspensions, but it was by no means a dirty game, with very few poor tackles. The nine men who finished off the game put in outstanding performances and got the reward they deserved, bringing all three points back to Newquay.

By Tom Howe 25th October 2017

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