IMG_0030Dock put in their best display of the season so far to dispense of the visitors from the Wallasey Premier Division in the first round of the Cheshire Cup. Due to injuries and other commitments, Dock could only muster a squad of fourteen for this fixture, but a fine display of passing football gave Dock a much deserved win, without too many scares on their goal.

A bright start from the home side saw the willing running of Keenan Mason and Tom Charters put the visitor on the back foot. Rob Whyte forced the Royal ‘keeper into a fine save on 14 minutes, after good work from Ian McGraa. Dock then went close again when a Whyte cross eluded the goalkeeper, only to drift narrowly wide of the far post. This was followed soon after by another curling effort from Ian McGraa, which again went wide.

It was on the half hour when Poulton produced their first real threat to the Dock goal, but Paul Davies in the home goal smothered the effort. Another fine Dock move on 33 minutes forced the Royal ‘keeper into another fine save. The Dock line was getting concerned as to when the breakthrough would come, for despite having the lion’s share of possession, half time was fast approaching.

However, five minutes before the break, Rob Whyte(pictured below) finished off a fine free kick routine, after Jon Clampitt’s kick was expertly knocked back by Carl Clampitt into his path for an easy tap in. Dock had further chances before the break, notably from Paul Byrne and a Mason shot.

HT: Dock 1-0 Poulton Royal.

Dock started the second half on the front foot, but were dealt an early blow when Rob Whyte pulled up with a hamstring injury. Substitute, Jack Warburton entered the fray and some tactical re-adjustments were made as Mark Head moved forward to join McGraa in attack. Head almost scored within two minutes of the change, forcing a good save from the Poulton goalkeeper. A slack back pass from Tom Wingfield almost gave a gift of an equalizer to Royal, but Paul Davies excelled in winning the ‘one on one’ with the Poulton attacker.

Dock doubled their lead on 67 minutes when Mark Head fired low into the bottom corner, running onto a long through ball from Wingfield. The striker’s colourful description of the goal cannot be printed, but the term ‘belter’ was used within the sentence!! The Clampitt brothers were now dominating possession in the centre of midfield, Jon and Carl running the tempo of the game with central defenders Ian Brunt and Paul Byrne shutting the door on any Royal counter attacks.

Dean Thomas was then introduced as the Dock’s second substitute, replacing the hard working Head. Against the run of play, Royal halved the deficit when a Poulton corner was not cleared, leaving an easy chance from two yards out on 78 minutes. Any worries, however, were dispelled on 80 minutes when Thomas fired in a third goal, almost identical to the previous effort from Head, neatly into the bottom corner.

Dock were now really enjoying their football and a fine fourth goal came, courtesy of a fine passing move involving Carl Clampitt, Warburton and Mason, who set up McGraa on 85 minutes. Dock now go on to round two, when they travel to Queens Bredbury on October 19th.

FT: Dock 4-1 Poulton Royal.

Dock. 4-4-2 (with substitues in brackets).
Davies, Charters, Bryne, Brunt, Wingfield, Mason, C. Clampitt, J. Clampitt, Head (Thomas), Whyte (Warburton), I. McGraa.


Report: Peter Warburton
Pictures: Chris Stading

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