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The Loan Report: April 19

A look at how the young Grecians are getting on away from St James Park

19 April 2018

Exiled Grecian's report covers matches played from Saturday, April 14 to Wednesday, April 18.

Alex Hartridge - Truro City - Vanarama League South
Saturday, April 14 | Chippenham Town 2-0 Truro City

Alex continued to be out of favour at Truro as he was an unused substitute in the play-off chasing visitors' disappointing defeat at mid-table Chippenham.

It was a game in which the White Tigers were never able to fully get into our stride, falling to late goals in each half from Andrew Sandell and Mike Jones.

Tuesday, April 17 | Truro City 2-1 Hungerford Town

Despite his side's defeat at the weekend, Hartridge again started on the bench for the visit of strugglers Hungerford.

The first half was an even affair, with both sides creating chances but unable to capitalise. The hosts suffered a blow on 25 minutes when Tyler Harvey was forced off injured.

Truro took the lead early in the second half when Connor Riley-Lowe converted a penalty for his fifth goal of the season. Despite the positive start to the second half by the hosts, the visitors responded to going a goal behind in positive fashion, asking a number of questions of the home defence.

The White Tigers weathered the storm though and scored the crucial second goal with just over ten minutes remaining when Niall Thompson curled one in after cutting in from the left.

Alex Hartridge was brought on in the 89th minute to help shore up the defence, but it proved to be a nervy ending to the game for Truro as Hungerford pulled a goal back in stoppage time through Conor Lynch. It proved to be too little too late for the visitors though, with the hosts holding on for a valuable three points.


  • League: 21 appearances, 16 starts, 1,538 minutes, 1 goal.
  • FA Cup: 3 appearances, 3 starts, 270 minutes*.
  • FA Trophy: 2 appearances, 2 starts, 180 minutes.

Last game:
17/4/2018, Truro 2-1 Hungerford Town, was subbed on in the 89th minute.

*Assumption made that he played the full 90 minutes vs AFC Sudbury in 3rd Qualifying Round.

Max Smallcombe, Ben Seymour & Josh Key - Bideford - Evo-Stick South West
Saturday, April 14 | Bideford 2-1 Paulton Rovers


Following their midweek postponement, Bideford recorded back-to-back victories with a comeback win over mid-table Paulton. Both Key and Seymour started for the Robins, while Smallcombe was absent.

The hosts started off brightly, with two excellent chances within the first two minutes. The first fell to Kevin Squire, who capitalised on a poor backpass but could only shoot wide, while Seymour repeated the feat when he burst into the box a minute later.

The visitors had their keeper to thank in the first half as he saved a number of efforts from Ryan Turner, James Mayne, Josh Key and Will Hancox to keep the scores level.

And the Robins were made to pay for their spurned chances, with Mitch Tippins drilling a 25-yard free kick low beyond Steve Oliver's reach on 40 minutes. It could have got even worse for the hosts just before half time, but fortunately for them Jack Ball sliced wide when in a promising position.

Bideford made their first half dominance count in the second half, levelling after just five minutes when Craig Allan volleyed in Matt Bye's free kick at the far post. And they took the lead their play deserved seven minutes later, with a goal worthy of winning any game. Turner and Seymour combined well in the opposition half, before the latter excellently played Turner in to cross for the onrushing Squire to head home the winner.

The hosts held on comfortably from that point, with Seymour being replaced by Ben Wood on 86 minutes in a crucial victory.

Monday, April 16 | Kidlington 1-2 Bideford

With Bideford's rearranged game with North Leigh being played on Thursday, the Robins made their longest trip of the season on Monday night to mid-table Kidlington. This was the second time the North Devon side had travelled to Oxfordshire this season, having led 1-0 when the original fixture was abandoned earlier in the season. Seymour and Key started again, while Smallcombe continued to be absent.

The Robins took the lead on 18 minutes through Ben Wood's neat finish. The midfielder was played through by a super ball from skipper Matt Bye, cutting inside the defender before slotting under the keeper.

Three minutes later the visitors were awarded a penalty when Ryan Turner was brought down in the box. Seymour, celebrating his 19th birthday, stepped up to score his 20th league goal of the season for Bideford.

The Robins were in control for the remainder of the match, conceding on 56 minutes from Duran Martin's 25-yard strike, and looked even more comfortable when Eddie Odhiambo was sent off for the hosts on 75 minutes. Steve Oliver pulled off an excellent save late on to secure another crucial victory ahead of a busy remainder of the week for Bideford.

They now host North Leigh on Thursday night, before travelling to third-bottom Slimbridge on Saturday.


Max Smallcombe:

  • League: 11 appearances, 9 starts, 757 minutes.
  • FA Cup: 3 appearances, 3 starts, 243 minutes, 2 goals, 1 assist.

Last game:
2/4/2018, Bideford 0-1 Taunton Town, subbed off after 63 minutes.

Ben Seymour:

  • League: 28 appearances, 25 starts, 2,131 minutes, 20 goals, 2 assists, 1 red card.
  • Challenge Cup: 1 appearance, 1 start, 90 minutes, 1 goal, 1 assist.
  • FA Trophy: 1 appearance, 1 start, 90 minutes, 1 goal.

Last game:
16/4/2018, Kidlington 1-2 Bideford, played the full 90 minutes, scored a penalty.

Josh Key:

  • League: 13 appearances, 12 starts, 1,130 minutes, 3 goals.
  • Devon Bowl: 2 appearances, 2 starts, 180 minutes, 1 goal.

Last game:
16/4/2018, Kidlington 1-2 Bideford, played the full 90 minutes.

*These stats aren't recorded on any website, so the minutes played is an estimate based on time-stamps on social media or match reports. Does not include stoppage time.

Sam Haynes & Mitch Thomas - Barnstaple Town - Evo-Stick South West
Saturday, April 15 | Bristol Manor Farm 5-1 Barnstaple Town


Having missed Barnstaple's last two games due to their involvement with City's under-18 squad against Bristol Rovers, Haynes and Thomas returned to Barum's first team for their heavy defeat at third placed Bristol Manor Farm.

Former Grecian Dean Stamp gave the high-flying hosts an early lead when he chipped the onrushing Aaron Screech after just seven minutes. Barnstaple levelled shortly after through Nathan Cooper in what was a fairly even first half.

But the hosts retook the lead just before half time when Jordan Metter's effort from outside the area bounced just in front of Screech and into the back of the net.

Bristol Manor Farm dominated the second half, with a 74th minute Kye Holly penalty being added to by Metter and Stamp to round off another miserable afternoon for Barum in a third successive league defeat.


Sam Haynes:

  • League: 12 appearances, 12 starts, 1,080 minutes.

Last game:
14/4/2018, Bristol Manor Farm 5-1 Barnstaple, played the full 90 minutes.

Mitch Thomas:

  • League: 8 appearances, 8 starts, 714 minutes, 2 goals.

Last game:
14/4/2018, Bristol Manor Farm 5-1 Barnstaple, played the full 90 minutes.

*These stats aren't recorded on any website, so the minutes played is an estimate based on time-stamps on social media or match reports. Does not include stoppage time.

Joel Randall - Taunton Town - Evo-Stick South West
Saturday, April, 14 | Wimborne Town 1-1 Taunton Town

Having also recently missed out on action due to U18s duties, and with Taunton having already secured the league title, Joel Randall made only his second start of his loan spell at right wing back on Saturday.

The Peacocks were given a Guard of Honour as they set out onto the pitch and quickly looked to show why they were the first team in the top eight tiers of England to have won the league: Dan Sullivan shooting high early on.

The champions took the lead on 20 minutes when Nuno Felix, with what appears to be more of a mishit cross rather than an terrific swerving shot, completely wrong-footed the keeper from 25 yards to open the scoring.

The hosts were level within 10 minutes though, when some poor marking from a set piece allowed Matt Oldring a comfortable header from just outside the six yard box.

The game petered out from there, with both defences keeping the opposition at bay, with Wimborne's 54-goal hero Toby Holmes failing to get on the scoresheet. Randall enjoyed a fine game however, putting in a number of crosses throughout the game.

Tuesday, April 17 | Winchester City 0-5 Taunton Town

Taunton secured another emphatic victory on the road on Tuesday night, which means that they are one game away from going the whole season unbeaten away from home. Randall again started for the Peacocks.

The visitors enjoyed near total domination throughout the game and took the lead after just three minutes. Craig Veal headed down in the box for Randall, whose neat first time flick back gave the former acres of space in the box to curl the opener across the keeper.

Veal then turned provider on 17 minutes, with his cross from the right being superbly volleyed into the top corner by captain Matt Wright.

The second half continued in much the same way, with Veal dispossessing the keeper after just six minutes before tapping into an empty net. Wright then added his second four minutes later when he volleyed in from six-yards following a goalmouth scramble, completing his hattick on 62 minutes when he slotted past the goalkeeper after being played square by Veal.


  • League: 6 appearances, 3 starts, 289 minutes.

Last game:
17/4/2018, Winchester City 0-5 Taunton, played the full 90 minutes.

*These stats aren't recorded on any website, so the minutes played is an estimate based on time-stamps on social media or match reports. Does not include stoppage time.

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