BRIDPORT delivered an efficient attacking display at St Mary’s Field, beating Hallen 3-0 to rise to ninth in the Toolstation Western League Premier Division.

First half goals from Ed Butcher and Mark Salter were added to by Richard Hebditch in the second period as the Bees claimed a win from their first of eight games this December.

Bridport were also forced into a late search for a goalkeeper after Dorchester Town stopper Chad Collins, who is dual-registered with the Bees, pulled out through injury, meaning Ashley Knibbs played in goal.

Speaking to Echosport, Bridport boss Adam Fricker felt his side had made a “cracking start” to their festive campaign given the circumstances.

He said: “It was all the more pleasing because we had a few goalkeeping issues. We were meant to get Chad in and he pulled out injured on Friday.

“We had to look around and get someone in and we managed to get Ashley. He hadn’t played for a few years and was a bit rusty.

“When you do change a goalkeeper it does unsettle a defence while they get used to it. We know we’ve got eight games to play and it’s a cracking start for us to get three points.

“It puts us up to ninth which is a little bit more respectable.”

Fricker was particularly pleased with the quality displayed in all three of the Bees’ goals.

He said: “It was three really good goals. The first came from a break when they had a free-kick and we broke and released Ed.

“He ran directly at the centre-backs and knocked it over the keeper as he went to ground. It was a really well-worked goal.

“Then Braeden Symes played it down to Leighton Thomas on the right wing. We’d been speaking about delivering the ball early for Salts and he got across his man and headed it in.

“Just after the break, it was some great interchange between Salts and Richard. Salts played it behind the defence for Hebbo to run in and slot it in.”

With his forwards in fine form during the victory, Fricker moved to praise his attacking players.

“We’ve got Ed who is improving week-by-week and we’ve got people like Leighton who can step in and go past people with ease – he got man-of-the-match.

“We’ve got people like Richard getting the goals as well as people like Mark, who’s only 10 away from scoring 500 senior goals.”

Bees: Knibbs, Sweet, Bailey, Andrews (Martin 55), Rutter, Symes, Hebditch (Cornish 70), Vance (Latas 80), Thomas, Butcher, Salter. Sub not used: Richardson


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