Ottery make terrific comeback at University

Ottery FC at home to Countess Wear Dynamoes. Ref shsp 48-16TI 2444. Picture: Terry Ife

Ottery FC at home to Countess Wear Dynamoes. Ref shsp 48-16TI 2444. Picture: Terry Ife - Credit: Archant

Ottery St Mary were involved in a goal-laded Macron League Division Four meeting at University with both sides taking something from the contest that ended 4-4.

It was very much a bitter-sweet afternoon for Otters boss Dave Fairweather who saw his team trail 2-1 at the break and then fall 4-1 behind before three substitutions in quick succession inspired a terrific response and comeback that so nearly ended in a glorious victory! James Gosney scored the first half goal, and the all-important second, that launched the fight-back, was a 30-yard strike by Chris Ambrose. Jake Allen scored the third and fourth goals.

Fairweather says: “I was left at full-time with a feeling of deep frustration. It was a game in which, for an hour, we were garbage. Then, at 4-1 down, we finally clicked into gear and, had we had a little longer, I am sure we’d have been the next to score and so claimed an unlikely win.

“The frustrating thing on the day was that we gave ourselves too much to do and the post-match reaction from the players was a clear sign that they were all really down about what had taken place. They were like Jekyll and Hyde in the game and I hope this weekend we can come up with the 30 minutes of quality last week and the first 80 minutes of the game before – if we can harness that from the first whistle then we’ll get the desired result at Uplowman.”

The three second half substitutes that made such a big impact were; Ben Rushden at left back, Kyle Hartnoll, on the right wing and Connor Lovering in central midfield.

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Fairweather says: “The three were superb and made a big difference.

“I cannot fault the general character in the team for they all dug in to get us out of the huge hole we had made, and the three changes played a big part in the turnaround.

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“Not many teams will give University a three goal advantage and claw them back as we did.”

The point at University keeps Otters in top four having now played 13 of their 24 match league campaign. Since mid-September the only two teams to defeat the Otters have been two of the three sides sitting above them (Thorverton and Kentisbeare), and on Saturday (December 10) they meet the third of those teams – Uplowman - when they travel to Mid Devon for a 2.15pm kick-off.

Uplowman have lost just once at home this season, though that was as recently as last weekend when they were beaten 2-0 by Thorverton.

The Otters are unbeaten away since a 4-0 reversal at Pinhoe in September and that remains the only time this season that Ottery have failed to score in an way contest.

Ottery and Uplowman met twice last season when both were Division Five teams. Each team won one with the Otters taking the home honours 4-2, but then getting beaten 5-1 when they visited Uplowman who went on to land the Division Five title – Ottery finish fifth , but also got promoted.

Chris Ambrose, Kyle Hartnoll and Ben Rushton are all missing for the trip to Uplowman, but other than that Otters have no injury worries.

Fairweather says: “We can win this game. It is important in terms of our overall season, that we bring something back with us from Uplowman.”

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