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Non-league: Middleton's relief at Wimborne win
RELIEVED defender Gary Middleton admitted Wimborne’s return to winning ways was “a weight off everyone’s shoulders” after their week from hell had ended on a high note.
Magpies bounced back from their seven-goal thumping at Paulton Rovers and 3-0 Dorset Senior Cup defeat at Poole Town by sealing a scrappy 2-1 win over Southern South & West strugglers Fleet Town.
After a goalless first half, the Cuthbury outfit secured their morale-boosting success thanks to a virtuoso effort from hotshot Mark Gamble before midfield man Aidan Sainsbury lashed home from an acute angle early in the second half.
However, Wimborne were forced to batten down the hatches after Pat Cox’s crisp volley set up a tense finale with eight minutes to play but eventually held out for three precious points to boost their quest for a play-off place.
While defensive linchpin Middleton acknowledged Saturday’s performance had been far from fluent, he insisted victory was all that mattered on the back of two resounding defeats.
And in a candid assessment of Wimborne’s recent form, the former Bashley stalwart lifted the lid on how those results had left the dressing room stunned as Magpies had their wings well-and-truly clipped.
Reflecting on Town’s recent tribulations, Middleton told the Daily Echo: “There were some mixed emotions after the (Paulton) game but I think it was mainly shock.
“They had gone into it on the back of a good result but so had we. We just didn’t turn up on the day as well as catching them at a bad time.
“The whole atmosphere was very flat afterwards and while we wanted to put things right against Poole, we were still feeling the effects.
“At Poole, there was a big difference between the sides and they could have scored a few more if they hadn’t taken their foot off the gas.
“In one way, we were pleased to get a clean sheet in the second half but overall it was disappointing and you never want to lose a derby game like that.
“It was not a vintage display against Fleet but it was important to bounce back quickly after the week we had. All that was important was the three points.
“Just getting that win was a weight off everyone’s shoulders to be honest, it didn’t matter how it came.
“On paper, we should be winning these games but it never turns out that way. In the end, we did what we had to and, hopefully, that can kick-off another good run so we can get back on track.”
Magpies: Harvell, Arnold, Oliver, Costello, Middleton, Blake, Webb, Sainsbury, Stokoe, Gamble, Griffin (Maybury, 90). Unused subs: Wilson, Kemble, Roast, Ackerman (g/k).
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