Clean sheet at Vikings' fort

HIGH FLYING Clyst Valley had to settle for a 0-0 draw at Fort Manstone against Sidmouth Town.

HIGH FLYING Clyst Valley had to settle for a 0-0 draw at Fort Manstone against Sidmouth Town but it was enough to lift them into the top three. Sidmouth needed to bounce back after losing to Thorverton the previous week and manager Paul Ashford was quietly confident, despite Valley having scored plenty of goals this season and conceded few. Ashford included young Toby Gigg, at right back, and Al Raistrick in his side and both played well as the team settled to their task.Sidmouth had the upper hand in the first half, and had shots hit the post from Andy Thompson, while Chris Duchenski also had a couple of chances inside the box. All in all Sidmouth looked pretty lively and, although Clyst had a tall centre forward with two wingers playing off him, the defence never looked like being breached. After the break Clyst rallied for a while but still didn't cause the Vikings problems apart from one mix-up when experienced defenders Sean Lapping and Mike Stamp thought Nick Gingell had a ball covered but fortunately Luke Ashford produced a fantastic one-handed stop to save their blushes.Sidmouth increased the pressure and were camped in the Clyst half in the closing stages, but were unable to get the vital goal. It was good to see Ben Valentine on as sub, back for the first time since breaking a bone in his foot earlier this season.The most positive thing to come out of the game was the clean sheet - Sidmouth's first since very early season - and an important breakthrough for the defenders. Sidmouth are away to third from bottom Hatherleigh on Saturday and can build on their Clyst Valley performance to jump back up to mid-table.

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