Match report courtesy of Merley Cobham Sports

With Merley coming off the back of a huge win and Bridport apparently struggling at the wrong end of the table, you would have been forgiven in thinking that this game was a fairly routine one. As is sometimes the way, this wasn't the case! 

Merley saw numerous chances go begging in the early stages of the game and were made to pay on the half hour when it was Bridport who found the net first. 

Merley gave the ball away cheaply and the Bridport winger delivered a pin point cross for their striker to nod in unchallenged at the back post.  

Their lead was short lived however, as just a minute later, Lee Wilkins found Ben Satterley with a slide rule pass which Satterley finished calmly for 1-1. 

The remainder of the half saw chances for both sides, with Dan Edwards firing just over, Bridport calling for a good save from Merley keeper Dan Woodland from long range and Matt Groves forcing two good saves in as many minutes from the Bridport keeper. 

As half time approached, Merley again conceded possession and were made to pay when another cross from the right left the Bridport striker with a simple tap in for the lead on 43 mins.

Half time – Merley Cobham Sports 1 – 2 Bridport Town. Bridport's goals were scored by Kriss Radivojsa and Riley Weedon (source: Full Time).

Ellis George almost levelled for Merley on 52 mins but his shot was parried by the Bridport keeper and was only able to guide the follow up over the bar. 

Bridport themselves then went close, hitting the crossbar with a fierce drive with Woodland routed to the spot. Merley piled on the pressure, with Asa Phillips going close twice and Matt Groves somehow not finding the net from a yard out. 

Jack Mills levelled the game on 70 mins with a half volley on his weaker right foot finding the top corner. With ten minutes left, Merley striker / player manager Groves had to come off with a gash to his head. 

Merley re-organised quickly and finally, after relentless pressure, the persistent Phillips put the home side in front on 89 mins when he blasted home a loose ball in the Bridport box for 3-2. Late substitute Jamie Moores made the points safe for Merley in injury time, firing home at the third attempt after a goalmouth scramble.

Full time - Merley Cobham Sports 4 – 2 Bridport Town 

11th September 2017 - Trevor Selby