The Full Time Match Report
By Parkways Sports Correspondent Graham Lloyd
FT: Plymouth Parkway 4 (Copp pen 18, Costa 25, Krac 86, Bentley 89)
Bideford AFC 3 (Rice- Lethaby 12, 32, Palmer 82).
Playing their 4th game in 8 days, Parkway entertained Southern League Division 1 South Bideford in the 1stround of the Devon St Lukes Bowl. With central defensive duo Rob Farkins and Nick Milton unavailable due to work commitments and Shane Krac, Billy Palfrey and top scorer Adam Carter all on the bench, it was a much changed starting eleven from Saturday’s rout of Odd Down (Bath). Parkway included trialists Elliot Ward, Callum Mcghee and Kieran Dyer in their squad and made 5 changes, some positional, with Aaron Bentley and Mikey Williams starting as the makeshift central defensive pair.
The game got off to a lively start with the busy Billy Tucker firing over for Bideford on 6 minutes after a Parkway defensive error. Bideford, looking like the side from a higher league, dominated the early stages as Parkway struggled to settle into their shape and pattern. Bideford took the lead on 12 minutes with the pacey, elusive Jack Rice-Lethaby beating the offside trap and cleverly lobbing the stranded Kyle Moore from around 15 yards.
With Parkway gradually getting to the pace of the game and the experienced trialist Ward beginning to gain some control in midfield, they equalised on 18 minutes. A ball into the box from the left saw Curtis Damerell upended with captain for the night Jordan Copp stepping up to convert his second penalty of the season. Play continued to be well contested going from end to end with both sides moving the ball well and looking to use the flanks to good effect. The pacey Will Tinsley broke forward down the right on 20 minutes firing a dangerous cross just wide of the far post. Tucker and Rice-Lethaby continued to threaten for Bideford but were unable to breach the Parkway defence with Bentley and Williams looking strong and composed.
Arguably against the run of play Parkway took the lead on 25 minutes. Antonio Costa playing wide on the left, who had initially struggled to get to the pace of the game, found himself in possession and casually stroked home a speculative effort from around 30 yards over the stranded Joe Moore in the Bideford goal. It was the Italian’s first goal for the club and a spectacular one it was too. Parkway now had a period in the ascendancy with Copp and Tinsley making inroads along the flanks and Ward, ably supported by Fletcher Williams, continuing to look assured in central midfield.
However it was Bideford who equalised on 32 minutes. Hesitant play in the Parkway midfield saw possession conceded and Ryan Turner and the lively Rice-Lethaby breaking clear of the last defenders for the latter to finish clinically for his second of the game giving Moore no chance. They almost increased their lead on 36 minutes when a powerful strike from the impressive Rice-Lethaby was acrobatically pushed away one handed by Moore with the rebound being cleared to safety. With James Mayne and Ben Palmer looking comfortable in central defence for Bideford, they finished the half the stronger and almost increased their lead on 42 minutes. With Parkway conceding possession in a dangerous area again, a Bideford snapshot from around 18 yards smacked against a post with Moore beaten with the ball rebounding off his head and behind for a corner. A lucky let off for Parkway as the half came to a close.
An entertaining, fairly even half with Bideford starting the better, Parkway coming into it more as the game progressed and Bideford finishing the stronger. Dyer replaced Mcghee at the break for Parkway. The first chance of the second half came on 51 minutes with a flowing move down the left involving Ward and Tiegan Rosenquest seeing the latter’s dangerous cross just elude the incoming Costa. Bideford responded immediately with Rice-Lethaby shooting wide from around 20 yards. Ward then saw his shot on the turn go just wide after a long throw from Tinsley was not fully cleared. With the game now opening up, Tucker saw his effort tipped over by Moore on 58 minutes as Bideford continued to look the more threatening.
Parkway made a double substitution on the hour with Krac and Palfrey replacing Fletcher Williams and Costa. The versatile Palfrey slotted into central defence releasing Mikey Williams into his more accustomed midfield role. Bideford continued to dominate possession with Parkway battling well to stay in the game. On 64 minutes Bideford’s Aaron Taylor became the first player to be booked as the game continued to be highly competitive and keenly contested. A neat one touch Parkway move on 69 minutes involving Ward, Krac and Williams ended with a sharp Ward shot going just wide.
Bideford continued to apply pressure forcing a series of corners and free kicks in dangerous areas with Tucker having a shot deflected behind. Back came Parkway and on 77 minutes a sharp break down the left with Krac, Copp and Rosenquest linking well saw a cross drop to Williams who shot horribly wide from 12 yards when well placed. Bideford regained the lead on 82 minutes after a sustained period of pressure and a series of corners the last of which saw central defender Palmer climb highest in a crowded 6 yard box and force home a header.
With Parkway now forced to throw more men forward, they equalised on 86 minutes. A long throw from the right by Tinsley caused havoc in the Bideford 6 yard box and with Palmer unable to get a clean header away, the ball came to Krac at the far post who hooked home with an athletic overhead kick from close range. With the game looking like it would be going straight to a penalty shootout, Parkway grabbed a dramatic winner on 89 minutes. Tinsley launched yet another missile into the danger area and with Bideford again unable to clear the danger, central defender Bentley popped up to scoop home a shot from close range for his third goal in successive games. Bideford created one more chance in stoppage time with Tucker making another forceful run down the right and firing in a cross which flew narrowly across the face of the goal and away to safety.
A battling performance from a much changed Parkway against a strong, well organised side from a league higher with the hosts showing great desire and determination not to give up, riding their luck occasionally, to earn a hard fought victory. Of the trialists, the experienced Ward was the most impressive having previously played at a higher level and having only met his team mates on the day of the game. Parkway will now meet either Plymouth Marjon or Ilfracombe Town in the next round on a date yet to be decided. Bolitho Park will host it’s third game in a week on Saturday when last year’s Western League Division 1 champions Keynsham Town are the visitors. Your correspondent will miss the game due to having a weekend away in Portsmouth with a sub likely to be summoned from the bench!
|1. Kyle Moore|
|2. Aaron Bentley||Goal|
|17. Mikey Williams|
|12. Teigan Rosenquest|
|13. Will Tinsley|
|7. Jordan Copp||Goal|
|16. Curtis Damerell|
|14. Fletcher Williams|
|18. Antonio Costa||Goal|
|3. Ryan Lane|
|4. Billy Palfrey|
|8. Shane Krac||Goal|
|9. Adam Carter|