N4 Financial Solutions Men’s League South 1: Chard 1st XI 2, Bridgwater 1st XI 1

CHARD continued their good run of form with victory at home to local rivals Bridgwater.

The visitors fielded a much different team from that at the beginning of the season and their general play was significantly below that of the previous encounter.

Chard started brightly keeping Bridgwater on the back foot with strong running by Dan Batten and Brendon Viggers causing problems for the defence.

Chard opened the scoring when Duncan Lewis pounced on a loose ball after the goalie had saved a shot and pushed the ball in the net.

This seemed to wake the visitors up and they became a larger threat. Superb tackling by man of the match Marcus Veatch kept their centre forward in check but a deflected through pass fell into the path of the winger who scored in an empty goal.

Almost immediately from the push back Brendon Viggers was released by a pass from Ian Wait and coolly rounded the keeper.

The second half became a scrappy affair, broken up by many infringements.

Chard’s defence held strong and pushed forward with Nick Crease who and Gary Wheaton.

Chard hit the post three times but it was Bridgwater who came closest in the dying minutes. After a double save by Kevin Mooney, the ball looped up and the visitors’ winger only could steer the ball onto the post from a metre and Steve Dar cleared the lines.

Chard entertain Tavistock on Saturday.

South-East 2: Taunton Vale C 3, Chard 2nd XI 0

THE scoreline does not reflect how hard Chard pushed the division leaders.

A goal down in the first couple of minutes, Chard adopted the harrying game plan captain Dave Lury had called for. They gave Vale little time to dwell on the ball and seized the initiative to such an extent that, for much of the first half, the home team were pinned back, relying on occasional counterattacks to relieve the pressure.

As with last week, Paul Tratt was outstanding in reading the game and timing tackles and interceptions and Harvey Lupton was brave and fast as first man out at penalty corners.

Simon Bidgood and Josh Wilson chased down Vale’s defenders forcing frequent errors and Trevor Goss and James Spurdle battled hard in the heart of midfield. On his 2nd XI debut Bertie Lupton impressed on the right wing.

But, for all their promising approach play, Chard struggled to carve out clear scoring chances, Vale’s disciplined defence almost always outnumbering Chard’s attackers.

At 1-0 there was always a chance that a mistake by the home side would give Chard the chance to level but Vale’s centre forward put them two up after being given a rare sight of goal, scoring with a powerful reverse stick strike.

As Chard began to run out of steam in the final ten minutes, Vale added a third goal from a penalty corner.

On the evidence of the last two matches, there is no doubting the team’s work ethic and competitive spirit, but it needs to find the guile to outsmart opponents who are equally organised in terms of defence and they must stop conceding the early goal.

Match sponsor: Elswood Mechanical Services.

West Women’s League Sedgemoor 1: Chard 1st XI 4, Taw Valley 2

AFTER a disappointing performance in their previous game, Chard secured a superb win over a team which normally dominates in this fixture.

Both teams created chances but it was Taw who were first to score midway through the first half.

Normally, Chard would take a while to get back in the game, but this time hit back straight away, winning a short corner from which Jenny Forsyth scored.

Chard kept pressing forward and managed another goal by Lyndsay Blackshaw to have the lead at half-time.

In the second half, Chard kept up the pressure with fine play by midfielder Kessiah Wakely and right winger Rose Mitchell.

Chard got a third goal through Forsyth but Taw made it 3-2 soon soon after to keep Chard working hard to remain in front.

However, Chard soon got their forth when Blackshaw rounded a couple of defenders and flicked the ball past the keeper to secure a fine win and team perfromance to be proud of.

Thanks to Chris Long, Alan Chuffey for umpiring and match sponsors Elswood Mechanical services.

Chard: H McGown, L Cox, Z Harris, G Pittard, K Jones, S Kelly, E Sterland, K Wakley, J Forsyth, M Preston, R Mitchell, L Blackshaw, S McDermott.

Chard Ladies Sunday A 2, Wincanton Ladies 0

CHARD worked hard and combined well to maintain pressure on the Wincanton goalkeeper for most of this game.

She made a string of excellent saves and, at one stage it was like a game of pinball as the keeper repeatedly repelled strong shots from open play and penalty corners.

Lois Butcher ran the ball repeatedly down the right wing in the first half, and her persistence paid off when the goalkeeper was finally beaten.

After making some half-time changes, Chard were still able to push forward from the middle through Holly Wells and Amy Greenhaugh and a good through ball found young Ruth Butcher who slotted home.

Further attacks were thwarted, and even the Chard’s usually successful short corner routines could not pass the keeper. In contrast, the home keeper only really kicked the ball once in the entire game.

Chard A are third in the league.

Match sponsors Elswood Mechanical Services.