HELLENIC LEAGUE: Turner not giving up after defeat to title rivals
6:00am Monday 4th February 2013 in By Ned Payne
WOOTTON Bassett’s Division One West title drive lost momentum on Saturday, but boss Dave Turner says his team are not giving up yet.
Second-placed Bassett were beaten 2-0 by league leaders Brimscombe & Thrupp for the second time this season, but still remain well-placed to grab at least the second automatic promotion spot.
A goal in each half was enough to give Brimscombe victory at the Meadow, and Turner freely admitted the hosts were well-worth their win.
“They were the better team, it’s as simple as that. We can have no complaints,” he said.
“I did some spying in the week and it would have taken a hovercraft to get round that pitch, but on Saturday it was remarkably good so I can’t even use that as an excuse.
“They managed to get a friendly in against Gloucester City last Saturday and getting that game in really helped them.
“I cant fault my lads ‘ effort, Brimscombe were just stronger and sometimes you have to hold your hands up.
“It’s all too easy to make excuses but I’m going to take nothing away from them, they were the better team.
“We either sulk and let it ruin our season, or we dig in and hope they slip up, and be ready to take advantage.
“I know which one I’m expecting but the proof of the pudding will be in the next game.”
Despite the defeat, Bassett are still hot favourites to return to the Hellenic Premier alongside Brimscombe and Turner is more than content with that situation.
“If someone had offered me this position before a ball had been kicked, I would have snapped their arm off,” he said.
“It’s in our hands and it’s up to us to be professional and committed as we have been.
“We haven’t conceded the title and we’ll fight to the end. We aren’t a million miles away.”
Elsewhere in the division, Fairford recorded a 1-1 draw at Hook Norton in the absence of manager Paul Braithwaite, who was away on holiday in Egypt.
Mark Dennis put the hosts 1-0 up several minutes before the break. However, Callum Parsons received a chest-high kick in the penalty area midway through the second half and Nathan Gambling put away the spot kick.
Fairford have several chances to win the game with Ash Taylor and Nathan Gambling both going close.
Braithwaite said: “From what my assistant told me, we deserved to win the game and they were a bit lucky to come away with a point.”
New College remain very much in relegation trouble following a 2-0 defeat at Lambourn, while Purton were beaten 3-0 by mid-table Old Woodstock.
Several matches in the Hellenic League did not get started this weekend, with neither of our Hellenic Premier sides getting a game due to the weather.
In Division One West, Malmesbury’s woes with their Flying Monk pitch continued as their clash with Carterton was postponed.
Vics have only played twice in the league since November 18 due to the recent poor conditions.