Exeter City rounded off their pre-season campaign with a hard fought 2-1 win over Torquay United at Plainmoor.
Despite falling behind early on through Manny Duku, City rallied through a Tom Parkes goal and a second half finish from Randell Williams.
Going into the final pre-season test before the Sky Bet League Two curtain raiser against Macclesfield Town next weekend, manager Matt Taylor named a strong side with Nicky Law, Ryan Bowman and Nicky Ajose all featuring amongst an experienced 11.
It was the home side who started the brighter in the opening stages through a succession of corners as the Grecians were tested aerially. United’s first attempt came on three minutes when Jean-Yves Koue Niate rose highest from a corner, but his header edged just wide of goal.
After riding out that initial pressure the Grecians started to create chances of their own. On 10 minutes Law burst into the United box before seeing his shot blocked into the path of Jake Taylor, but the captain’s effort was well saved to Lucas Cavagnari’s left.
But it was Gary Johnson’s side who would find the game’s first goal a few minutes later when Torquay managed to win the ball back on the edge of the City box, and Duku finished low past Lewis Ward, despite the City protests that there had been a foul on Dean Moxey in the build-up.
Former Grecian Jamie Reid was next to have an attempt for Torquay on 23 minutes when Keating darted inside before the ball fell kindly for the forward to volley just over Ward’s goal.
Jake Andrews would then go close for United when Duku was found in behind before crossing low for the midfielder to crash an effort off the crossbar from a tight angle as City looked to gain more of a foothold in the game.
Randell Williams would have another of City’s attempts on the half-hour mark after some good fortune saw the ball fall to him on the edge of the box, but the winger dragged his low shot wide of goal.
The City winger had another glorious chance just a few minutes later when Law found Ajose out wide before the forward crossed to the back post, but Williams’ header was unable to trouble Cavagnari as the ball nestled wide of goal.
And the Grecians did draw level just moments before half-time after a City corner was kept alive by Bowman before Parkes fired at goal, and despite the Torquay players attempting to block on the line, the ball found its way over as the sides went in at the break at 1-1.
Andrews would have Torquay’s first chance after the break when the home side did well down the right before crossing to the far post, but he was unable to keep his effort on target as he shot well over.
But it was the Grecians who would go ahead next when Ajose ran onto Bowman’s flicked header before he dragged the ball back cleverly for Williams to slot the ball home with a calm finish on 53 minutes.
City then managed to take control of the next 20 minutes with little chances coming for either side as Matt Taylor’s men saw more of the possession.
Parkes almost got his second on 78 minutes when the Grecians worked a quick corner out to Taylor, and his cross found the central defender, but his header could only find the roof of the net.
Armani Little then went close seven miniutes from time from a free-kick on the edge of the City box but his effort was pubched away well by Ward.
Torquay United: Cavagnari, Wynter, Cameron, Koue Niate, Keating, Hall, Duku (Buse, 75), Little, Andrews (Lumbombo-Kalala, 59), Vincent, Reid
Subs not used: MacDonald, Koszela, Collings, Evans, Slough, Baxter, Price
Exeter City: Ward, Sweeney, A. Martin, Law (Tillson, 90+1), Williams, Bowman, Ajose (L. Martin 80), Parkes, Moxey, Taylor, Collins
Subs not used: Maxted, Jay, Fisher, Sparkes, Cundy, Seymour