Exeter City fell to a narrow 1-0 defeat away from home at Newport County AFC in Sky Bet League Two.
Jamille Matt's second half finish was the difference on the day where the Grecians went agonisingly close when Dara O'Shea's header was well saved and Ryan Bowman hit the crossbar.
Manager Matt Taylor made two changes to the side that began the goalless draw with Morecambe last weekend as Ryan Bowman made his first start for the club and Kane Wilson came into the side following his loan signing earlier in the week.
The first real chance of the match fell on eight minutes when Newport switched the ball to the right for Robbie Wilmott to cross dangerously, but Matt’s powerful header could only find Christy Pym who collected well
The Grecians’ first attempt came on 26 minutes when a deep free-kick from Nicky Law found Dara O’Shea, but despite his header going towards the far corner, Joe Day did well to claw the ball away from goal.
Both sides continued to trade half chances throughout the opening period, but City had a good opportunity on 40 minutes when Bowman teed up Law, but his left footed effort was well blocked for a corner.
Moments later Newport went close when Padraig Amond chested the ball into the path of Antoine Semenyo, but his first-time strike edged just over Pym’s goal as the sides went in level at the break.
Bowman then almost opened his City account in style when the ball fell to him just outside the County box before he chested the ball and volleyed powerfully over Day to strike the crossbar.
Tyreeq Bakinson then tested Pym just before the hour mark when the ball fell to him at the far post, and despite connecting well, Pym dived excellently to his right to turn the ball behind.
Jake Taylor was next to try his luck for the Grecians when the ball fell to him centrally, and after taking a touch, he stabbed it goalwards from the edge of the Newport box, but the ball edged just wide of goal.
But it was the home side who would take the lead on 72 minutes following a Newport corner, and the ball fell to Matt to fire home from close range to give Mike Flynn’s side the advantage.
Amond went inches from doubling the home side’s lead just a few minutes later when an in-swinging corner found him centrally, but the ball nestled just wide of Pym’s left-hand post.
But despite making changes through the likes of Randell Williams, who made his first City appearance, as well as Lee Holmes and Tristan Abrahams, City were unable to find a way back into the match.
Newport County AFC: Day, Butler, Willmott, Amond, Matt, Bakinson, Bennett, O’Brien, Poole, Demetriou, Semenyo
Subs not used: Townsend, Pipe, Labadie, Dolan, Marsh-Brown, Sheehan, Neufville
Exeter City: Pym, Sweeney, O’Shea, Woodman (Abrahams, 85), Law, Bowman, Forte (Williams, 64)), Moxey, Taylor, Collins, Wilson (Holmes, 73)
Subs not used: Hamon, A. Martin, Tillson, L. Martin
Attendance: 3,791 (Inc, 727, away)