Bristol Manor Farm squeezed past their Bath rivals in this Bank Holiday fixture courtesy of a Dean Stamp winner in the 77th minute to seal the three points and cement second place in the table. Both teams would have been deserving of an ice cold bath at the end of this difficult, well-contested match played in blisteringly hot conditions.
Openings were few and far between during an understandably scrappy first half as both teams tried to adjust to the searing temperatures down on the pitch.
Ben Bament looked lively enough for the home side in the opening ten minutes of the game and Alex Lambert for Larkhall broke quickly down the right, cutting inside Aron Robbins before drifting a left foot shot wide of Ashley Clarke’s right upright.
Manor Farm took the lead in the 11th minute when Troy Simpson broke into the left channel and struck a sweet shot with the outside of his right boot low into the far corner.
Larkhall thought they had equalised two minutes later but centre forward George King was flagged clearly offside.
King came close to drawing his side level again on 40 minutes but his firm header from a central position in the box sailed a foot over the bar. Two minutes later Ben Bament had an effort also ruled out for offside and Farm took a slender lead into a welcome half-time break.
With both sides freshly watered the second half had a lot more quality on show, particularly Corey Simpson (Troy’s brother) for Larkhall and the increasingly influential Farm skipper Jordan Metters.
Farm striker Dean Stamp set the tone for an entertaining second half two minutes after the break when a left footed curling effort from outside the box went narrowly wide. Joe Tumelty then had a long range effort for the visitors and Metters got off a good shot with his right foot for the Farm.
A dangerous Larkhall cross was turned away from the far post by Farm central defender Martin Stowell as the visitors increased the pressure on their hosts in search of an equaliser. A minute later it duly arrived when the lightning quick Simpson (Corey) drove forward again before neatly placing his shot into the far corner of the net beyond Ashley Clarke’s full-length dive. 1-1.
Larkhall had their tails up now – looking for a winner – and Metters had to hook the ball off his own line after more quick and powerful play by Simpson.
Five minutes later it was Dean Stamp who broke the deadlock – rising well to plant a header in off the joint of post and bar from substitute Jake Cox’s excellent cross from the left having been fed a decent ball via more skillful work by Metters.
With five minutes to go Farm left back Aron Robbins had to clear again at the far post and Lloyd Mills headed another dangerous cross behind for a corner as Larkhall searched desperately for a leveller. Ashley Clarke produced an outstanding fingertip save in injury time, diving full-stretch to keep out a fierce drive through a crowd of players and watched as the resultant corner deflected up on top of the crossbar for another corner. Farm held their nerve though and the referee soon brought proceedings to an end with both sets of players warmly applauded from the pitch. Manor Farm secured their first home win of the season and remain unbeaten in their opening four games of the campaign. Hot stuff indeed…
STAR MAN (Jordan Metters, Bristol Manor Farm)
|28th August 2017||15:00 PM||Southern League: Divison One South & West||2017/18|
|96 Portway, Bristol BS9 2HS, UK|
|Club||1st Half||2nd Half||Goals|
|Bristol Manor Farm||1||2||2|