Clarke, Morris



PORTLAND United clung on for their fourth straight Sydenhams Wessex Premier Division home win as Bashley went down 2-1 at the Weyline Stadium.

Brendon King’s charges were dumped out of the FA Vase in a 2-0 loss at Exmouth last time out, and the Blues’ fans might have feared more punishment after an opening half in which chances were wasted.

British Virgin Islands international Bailey Rowe saw a goalbound strike blocked before Ryan McKechnie spurned a good chance following nifty build-up play between Josh Williams and Max Buckler.

Ben Morris also missed out from a pinpoint Max Buckler cross as Portland went in 0-0 at the break.

Portland persevered in the second half and were rewarded halfway through it.

An Alex Halloran corner was nodded on and defender Crit Clarke was able to prod home from six yards for 1-0.

Portland doubled their lead rapidly when more enterprising approach play carved out an opening for Morris, who lashed home a bullet into the top corner from 20 yards.

Substitute Jamie Beasley then teed up Rowe who flashed a header off target before the latter was denied by a superb save from the Bash keeper.

Portland were now creating chances at will and a mazy dribble from Beasley presenting a good chance, only for the winger to crash a shot back off the post.

Having ridden their luck, Bash halved the deficit when Clarke’s clearance fell to Harry McGrath, who rifled a deflected shot over Boore for 2-1.

Rowe, Williams and Beasley all passed up chances in the dying stages and Portland had to rely on goalkeeper Steve Boore who preserved their lead with a fine late save.

Speaking to Echosport, King said: “Sometimes it’s about the three points and we did make hard work of it.

“We did miss some chances in the first half but once we got the first goal we got a second quite quickly and could’ve got a couple more.

“A bit of a lapse in concentration at the back cost us. They got back into it which caused us a few little moments at the end.

“But we had another couple of chances to get the third and we didn’t take them. A little bit disappointed with the quality of our finishing but I’ll take three points.”

Blues: Boore, Bastick (Bessant 50), Symes, Clarke, Cox, Halloran (Stewart 72), Williams, M Buckler (Beasley 65), McKechnie, Morris, Rowe.

Match ball sponsor: Liz & Bill Babb

Programme sponsor: Karen’s Motorcycling School, Weymouth

Man of the match: Josh Williams, sponsored by Sean Williams Planning Ltd

Attendance: 120


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