(SATURDAY) SWPL WALTER C PARSON FUNERAL DIRECTORS LEAGUE CUP (THIRD-ROUND)
Camelford 4 Newton Abbot Spurs 1
BROOKLYN Wilkins scored twice and assisted two more as Camelford breezed into the last eight of the Walter C Parson League Cup with a 4-1 victory over much-fancied Newton Abbot Spurs at Trefrew Park.
The Camels led 3-0 at the break with Wilkins, Olly Taylor and Ross Beare on the scoresheet, and although Toby Pullman pulled one back from the spot, Wilkins’ brilliant header got the job done.
Camels boss Reg Hambly was banned from the ground following three yellow cards, but he had the luxury of choosing from a near full-strength squad with the exception of defender Tom Crowe (working), striker Leo Best (unavailable) and the versatile Tom Cowling (suspended), with veteran striker Mark Gusterson fit enough to return after being out since August.
In front of a surprisingly small crowd, the Camels got their passing football going from the outset as they probed throughout the opening exchanges without really threatening.
Newton Abbot, fourth in SWPL Premier East, twice went close with Pullman, who was booked for a poor challenge on full-back Sam Watts, heavily involved.
First he couldn’t quite get on the end of a fine cross from right-back Callum Fyfe, before he struck into the side netting at the near post after dispossessing Dan Metherell as he looked to shepherd the ball behind for a goal-kick.
However the Camels kept patient and took the lead 12 minutes in.
A ball over the top found Wilkins some 25 yards out, and he kept his cool by rolling the ball under the advancing Kitson Glanville in the Spurs goal.
Centre-back Sam Wade missed a good chance for a second when he headed Connor Sturdy’s corner over the bar from eight yards, but on 20 minutes it was 2-0, with Wilkins again heavily involved.
Skipper Charlie Hambly won the ball on halfway, played it to fellow midfielder Ross Beare, who sent an eye-of-the-needle pass through to Wilkins.
He was one-on-one with Glanville in the centre of the goal, but squared it to winger Olly Taylor to roll it into an empty net.
Wilkins was twice denied by Glanville in the space of 30 seconds as the half-hour mark approached.
First a throw-in from left-back Jake Chafer was allowed to roll across the edge of the box which saw a well-hit effort towards the near post beaten away, before the keeper went one better when he tipped Wilkins’ drive that looked destined to go into the top corner from 15 yards, over the bar.
The Devonians responded when midfielder Nick Rudge hit the base of the post from just inside the box, but it was 3-0 on 42 minutes.
A Wilkins pass found his house mate Beare some 25 yards out but way to the left of the box, and with Glanville in a poor position, he curled a beauty of a finish inside the near post.
Newton Abbot had a decent claim for a penalty turned down on the stroke of half-time as Pullman went down under a challenge from Chafer, but they had a mountain to climb after the break.
However eight minutes in they pulled one back as Beare, now playing at centre-half with Dan Metherell going off to be replaced by Eli Evans, brought down Rudge.
Pullman sent Josh Colwill the wrong way from the spot.
Wilkins thought he’d scored a second on 54 minutes when he shot home, but it was disallowed for offside.
Visiting centre-half Finn Pearse headed wide when well placed from Theo Ramsey’s ball in as they pushed for a second, but the game was all but up on 64 minutes when Wilkins bulleted in a header at the near post after a superb ball in by Andy Boxall from the byline as he slid.
Moments before that, Pearse was perhaps fortunate to only receive a yellow after hauling down Wilkins after the striker stole the ball off him some 25 yards out.
Assistant boss Phil Brown emptied the bench in the final 20 minutes with Tom McLachlan and debutant Cale Jones coming on.
To Newton Abbot’s credit, they continued to battle away, but they should have found themselves 5-1 down on 79 minutes when subs Shae Cardiff and Gusterson combined, with the former shooting straight at Glanville.
In the final moments, Colwill acrobatically tipped away sub Ricco Moranzoni’s effort, before Pearse headed over from four yards, but it was Camelford's afternoon.
CAMELFORD: Josh Colwill; Sam Watts, Sam Wade, Dan Metherell, Jake Chafer; Charlie Hambly (capt), Ross Beare, Andy Boxall; Olly Taylor, Brooklyn Wilkins, Connor Sturdy. Subs: Tom McLachlan, Eli Evans, Cale Jones, Mark Gusterson, Shae Cardiff.
Camelford man of the match: Brooklyn Wilkins.