Otters claim victory at home of the Tigers.

Ottery St Mary picked up their first win of the season with an excellent performance against hosts, and East Devon rivals, Axminster Town.

Since taking the Otters hot-seat, Mel Coombs has been busy bringing in new faces and a master-stroke looks to be getting the experienced and highly respected Phil Margrett.

Ottery made a bright start to the game with much of their most positive play coming down the right flank where Rob England was very influential.

Indeed it was an England cross that led to Russ Coombs firing home from 18-yards after just ten minutes to give the visitors the perfect start.

Ten minutes later the lead was doubled when seasoned campaigner Kenny Smith opened his account for his new team with a well struck effort from 25-yards.

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Now in previously unchartered territory this campaign ton date – a two goal lead – the Otters began to play some delightful football.

However, they were also guilty of significantly taking their foot off the pedal and this allowed the home side to gain in confidence.

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A minute before the break Axminster halved the deficit and so went into half-time on a high.

The Tigers started the second half the stronger and, on 55 minutes, drew level. Otters boss Coombs then range the changes and introduced Ben Woolley for the injured Dave Weeks at centre half, whilst Jake Allen took over from the hard working – and efficient - Matt Preece.

The changes worked and the Otters were soon back on the front foot.

With Axminster holding an increasingly high defensive line, it needed some quick thinking to break them down and it came from substitute Allen who broke clear, rounded the home keeper, and rolled the ball home.

Ten minutes from time Allen was again the scorer to seal a richly deserved 4-2 win, a first triumph of the campaign for the rapidly improving Otters.

A thrilled Coombs said: “To be fair we should have had the game won by half time as we missed a host of chances but what I will say is the unbelievable commitment shown by my side coupled with what looks a really terrific collective desire to succeed. There are many a team who have had the season Ottery have had, that, when the Tigers got back at 2-2, would have eventually gone down. The first win was very important and it gives us all the added belief that we are heading in the right direction. Now we want to build on this success. My commitment to this football club will not wane, I have made three more signings, which I hope will be enough for now, one of our latest is Dan Clay, who although playing at Tiverton Town will give us such a lift when possibly available to play for us”

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