When they badly needed a result, Torquay United delivered a performance that showcased the full range of qualities required in must-win games.

In front of a passionate Yellow Army at Plainmoor and a sprinkling of guest fans from Plymouth Argyle and Exeter City, the Gulls produced some excellent attacking play in the first half to dominate Hampton & Richmond for long periods.

Asa Hall struck the only goal with a penalty on the half-hour and then led his troops to a brave rearguard action after the break, as United survived a siege against a team chasing promotion.

“A great result and I’m really proud of the players,” said interim boss Aaron Downes. “They’ve put in a lot of effort on the training pitch this week and that came to fruition.

“There was a lot of resilience shown in the second half and some great play in the first half, when we were the dominant team and I was really happy with how we played. We had to show our defensive qualities, and lots of character to stand up to an onslaught in the second half.

“I’m really pleased for them because they’ve earned the result. In the last ten minutes, I had goosebumps because, when we needed the energy and electricity in the stadium, it was brilliant from our supporters.

“The boys get that lift to see out the performance and everybody goes home happy. Everybody at the football club has played their part and I’m proud of them all.

“We had to show two sides to our game, played some great football in the first half and got into some dangerous areas. We created some good chances and then showed that resilience in the second half.

“It is a standard we’ve got to strive to achieve now. We’ve got good players in our squad, we just need some belief and confidence that we can beat anybody. This will give them the shot in the arm they needed.”

Victory on the pitch arrived in tandem with news that former Torquay manager and all-round football legend Neil Warnock has met with prospective new owners of the club, and was impressed with their vision of the Plainmoor future.