Wellington’s 3-1 victory over local rivals Bridgwater in the Toolstation Premier League derby match on Friday 30th March takes them one further step closer to safety in this division. More importantly for the team and their Manager, Clive Jones, the determination and skill shown on a swamp-like pitch was a testament to their spirit against opponents placed well above them in the league.
In continuous rain that caused the postponement of five other matches, Wellington started strongly, with good movement both on and off the ball which, in the conditions, was no small achievement. It was Bridgwater, though, who looked closer to scoring in the opening minutes with the Tangerines’ goalie, Tom Welch, forced into making two impressive saves in quick succession.
Playing down the slope, Wellington put pressure on Bridgwater’s goal with their first strike hitting the crossbar before Sam Towler scored from a fine shot on 18 minutes. The second for the home side came just 10 minutes later when a clear penalty was put forcefully into the net by Ian Bellinger.
Glen Wright added a third just after the interval before Bridgwater’s Tom Llewellyn scored from a pass from former Wellington striker, Jack Taylor. Taylor was later booked. A red card for a Wellington substitute meant that Wellington had to defend for the final 15 minutes of the match but their victory was deserved. It also delivered some compensation for the team’s 4-1 defeat at Paulton Rovers in the semi-final of the Somerset FA County Cup on Tuesday 27th March. The home side acknowledged the visitors’ fighting spirit: “The scoreline did Wellington little justice as they fought to the end and, for a period in the second half, had the home side on the back foot.”
Wellington have proved that, with a full complement of first team regulars available – including the Bryant brothers and the very impressive Ian Bellinger, they can take on the best in this division.
They now have two away matches – on Monday 2nd April at Cadbury Heath and on Saturday 7 April against Chipping Sodbury Town. Cadbury Heath are near the foot of the table in 18th place and Chipping Sodbury are just one place above Wellington in 13th position.