Report by Jon Green
Rovers poor form continued as they crashed out of the Somerset Premier Cup on Tuesday evening following a 3-0 defeat to Bridgwater Utd.
The hosts went into the game with fragile confidence having been defeated in their previous two league games, conceding eight goals in the process. So the loss of several players due to injury and ineligibility didn't make matters any easier for player manager, Kyle Tooze.
Bridgwater themselves are flying high in the Toolstation Premier League, one division below Rovers, and their confidence is high. So in the first thirty minutes they more than held their own. Rovers went close early on when Neil Martin found Ed Butcher, whose cross was cut out just before Kyle Tooze could make contact.
The visitors also went close in the 16th minute when a freekick flashed wide of the post and seconds later at the other end of the pitch, Kyle Tooze forced a good save from the Isaac Finch.
However as the half progressed, Rovers started to get sloppy with their passing, especially when playing from deep. On more than one occasion, Bridgwater pressed high and cut-out seemingly straight forward passes and only last ditch stops or good saves by young Rovers keeper, Alfie Hamblin, kept the score level.
The deadlock was broken in the 41st minute when Ben Griffiths easily turned in a corner at the near post. The second goal came early in the second half. As Bridgwater moved the ball around neatly, they suddenly accelerated and a quick ball out to the left was similarly moved on splitting the Rovers defence allowing Adam Wright to stride in and turn the ball home.
Shouts for the Rovers reaction came from all over the pitch and it nearly worked as two minutes later, Dan McBeam fed Kyle Tooze put his close range effort was knocked wide by the keeper.
The game was made safe for Bridgwater in the 60th minute when another defence spitting pass found Jay Murray. With the Rovers defence scrabbling back, Murray turned back inside and from the edge of the box, smashed the ball in off the post.
With the game effectively won, Bridgwater lifted their foot off the gas which allowed Rovers to get more time on the ball and they started to press forward more in the final few minutes. But too often the final ball was poor and the visitors keeper remained untroubled for most of the rest of the game.
It was another disappointing performance especially in a game that came at the perfect time for Rovers to forget about their league form for a while and show what they can do.
Next up, its back to league matters when we travel to Evesham Utd on Saturday. Full coach details coming soon in the preview, but you can go on and leave your name on the list at the club if you wish to travel.