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Appledore to face Willand Rovers in Devon Premier Cup

By NDJMark  |  Posted: December 09, 2013

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Appledore have been drawn at home to Willand Rovers reserves in the quarter-final of the Graddon Vending Devon Premier Cup.

After a hard-earned win at Pymstock United on Saturday, the Fishermen will play the Fresha Devon an Exeter League side at Marshford on February 15.

Willand caused an upset on Saturday by knocking out Exwick Villa in the third round. 

With rival teams from the Carlsberg South West Peninsula League, crashing out, Appledore are optimistic they can return to the final for the first time since winning the competition in 2010.

"Exwick and Stoke Gabriel went out," said Keith Shapland, the manager. "It's only Teignmouth left who are above us.

"It's a competition I wanted to do well in. League form has slipped a bit lately, not that we are going to disregard the league, but it would be nice to get to a final."

Despite missing several key players, Appledore dug in for a 2-1 win at Plymstock, avenging the 1-0 defeat there in Division One East last month.

With Jamie Frickleton suspended and Tim Watson unavailable, they played Mark Cann and Jack Gilbert in a new central-defensive pairing.

Nathan Broome played his first full game in midfield and Shapland, making a rare start after recovering from a calf injury, joined Shaun Copp up front.

The visitors went ahead when Shapland picked out Broome who crossed for Sam Fishwick to score a header.

Plymstock hit back within two minutes when Cann could only loop an attempted clearance past his own goalkeeper Darren Rose.

The winning goal came 10 minutes from time when James Marsh and Fishwick combined and Copp turned sharply to hit his 10th of the season.

In stoppage time, Plymstock struck the bar for a second time and Appledore were relieved to see the ball bounce wide off Rose's back.

"We had to fight for it," said Shapland. "We rode our luck at times but after the last couple of weeks we were due a bit of luck.

"We haven't got much height in the side, particularly without Watson and Frickleton. 

"Darren did well in goal. He claimed what he had to claim and  Mark Cann and Jack Gilbert were outstanding. They were playing against players that weren't the most skilful but were big, solid players who were really difficult to mark."

Appledore will be boosted for the trip to Newton Abbot Spurs on Saturday with Watson,  Frickleton, Greg Holland and Brian Levien available again.

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