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On this day 1997: Fleet Town 0-2 Weymouth

FLEET TOWN 0

WEYMOUTH 2

COLOURFUL Weymouth shrugged off their recent poor form to blast back to third in the table with a dominating performance at Fleet.

The Terras, playing in Fleet’s jester-like spare shirts due to a kit mix-up, gave a timely reminder of their potential and provided great entertainment for the large portion of Weymouth fans in the crowd.

Manager John Crabbe was delighted with the result, which was only Weymouth’s second win in five games.

He said: “All the players were disappointed with the recent home games and wanted to show they were better than that. It was a good game and an excellent performance.”

He added: “Darren Powell and John Waldock both played very well at the back but everybody contributed to the result.

“Our passing and control was the best it has been for a while now and that was particularly good to see.”

Crabbe had moved Powell to his preferred position of centre-back at the expense of Lee Bradford, with Waldock on the right and Powell’s performance was a revelation, a composed and competent display, free from the responsibilities of the captaincy which Crabbe had returned to Alex Browne.

Weymouth attacked from the outset and got the game off to a rousing start.

Seven minutes and several chances on, David Laws leaped up to volley home Nick Flory’s cross in dramatic swashbuckling style.

The Terras’ threatening attacking moves were coming thick and fast Mark Jackson’s shot deflected wide off Paul Chambers’ thigh, Laws’ header flew straight at keeper Mark Watson then his fiery blast was almost headed into the net by defender Tony Brown.

And it was thanks to the magnificent efforts of keeper Watson that Fleet remained just one goal down at half-time.

His two most spectacular efforts came late in the half, the first when he flicked away Laws’ one-on-one shot with his outstretched left hand.

Then on 37 minutes Jackson produced an overhead scissor-kick which appeared to be flying goalwards when Watson dived to make a brilliant save.

Fleet forced their Way back into the game.

On 54 minutes John Richards had a free shot in front of goal but smacked the ball high.

Then the same player side-stepped the Weymouth defence, charged down on goal but Paul Myers stood his ground and made an excellent point blank save.

But thanks to some superb rearguard action the Terras weathered the storm and took control again.

Watson denied Laws again with a cool overhead save but it was the rejuvenated striker who had the last laugh.

With 10 minutes to go Laws found himself in space on the right, sprinted forward and round the keeper and two defenders, kept his cool and slid the ball behind them and into the net from an unbelievable angle.

Weymouth: Myers, Powell, Flory (Housley 64), Browne, Waldock, Mason, Robinson, Hutchinson, Lovell, Laws, Jackson.

Unused subs: Bradford, Watkins.

Attendance: 156.

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