Long nets hat-trick as Beer Albion march into Devon Premier Cup last 16

Beer Albion Reserves at home to Winkleigh in the Bill Slee Cup. Ref mhsp 44 19TI 2617. Picture: Terr

Beer Albion Reserves at home to Winkleigh in the Bill Slee Cup. Ref mhsp 44 19TI 2617. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Beer Albion sailed into the last 16 of the Devon Premier Cup with a convincing 7-0 win against Plymouth Hope at a wet and windy Furzebrake on Saturday, writes Richard Honnor.

Beer Albion Reserves at home to Winkleigh in the Bill Slee Cup. Ref mhsp 44 19TI 2615. Picture: Terr

Beer Albion Reserves at home to Winkleigh in the Bill Slee Cup. Ref mhsp 44 19TI 2615. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Whilst the Plymouth and West Devon Premier League outfit had some skilful individuals on show, their frailties in defence were frequently exposed by the Fishermen's bold attacking play.

Much of the first half was keenly contested with both sides going at each other with open attacking football and plenty of chances ensued, but it was the Fishermen who looked the more threatening and they took a 1-0 lead on 18 minutes through Charley Skilton.

The young midfielder started the move in his own half with a great pass which released Taylor Rooke down the left.

Rooke beat his man, then drilled a cross into the the area which Skilton, driving forward, met with an unstoppable header past Hope's keeper.

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The response from the visitors was good only a good save on 19 minutes by Beer glovesman Elliott Driver prevented Hope's Kelvin Fyneboy from levelling.

This proved to be a key moment in the contest for just two minutes after they might have been pegged back, Beer were 2-0 up when a throw-in on the right was flicked on by Jay Catley to striker Chris Long who swept the ball under the keeper's body from 12 yards. Back came the Plymouth side and the Fishermen had to defend desperately at times. Indeed, only a last-ditch block by Beer centre back Fraser Beaumont on 28 minutes, followed by another excellent close range save by Driver from the ensuing corner prevented the visitors from reducing the arrears.

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At the other end of the Furzebrake pitch, the opposition defence always looked vulnerable to Beer's swift counter-attacks and, after missing several good chances, Beer scored twice more just before the break.

On 40 minutes, midfielder Finley Rooke found Chris Long with an inch-perfect 20 yard pass down the left channel and the Beer striker forced the ball home and, three minutes later it was 4-0 when a wind-assisted cross from Catley bounced up wickedly in front of the keeper and sailed over his head into the net.

After the break, the Furzebrake supporters were treated to some fine attacking football.

After Long had shaved Hope's post with a firm header, their outstanding forward, Fyneboy, hit the post with a free kick and then shot narrowly wide after a mazy run.

Beer netted a fifth just before the hour mark and it was certainly the 'best goal of the game'.

Wing-back Jack Prior found Catley down the right flank and, when he pulled his cross back from the by-line, Skilton rifled the ball home with a superb first time left-foot strike from the edge of the area.

Long completed his hat- trick when he nudged in Jack Prior's low cross on 73 minutes and then Giles Basson completed the scoring when he cut in from the left and fired home from the edge of the penalty area.

Match sponsor John Wheeler Builders Ltd singled out Kelvin Fyneboy as Plymouth Hope's best player whilst for Beer Charley Skilton was named the Man of the Match.

Not far behind were the performances of Liam Cox who was calm and assured at the heart of the Beer defence and keeper Elliott Driver.

On Saturday (November 9), Beer first team resume their Macron League Premier Division programme with a short trip to local rivals Colyton.

Meanwhile at the Furzebrake Beer 2nd's entertain Newton St Cyres 1st team in a Division Two meeting (2.15pm). Saturday's Furzebrake match sponsor is Bessie Mai's.

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