After some torrid fortune with the weather, Poole Town will play their first home league match in more than two months this Saturday.
The Dolphins face off against Taunton Town who sit in an impressive fifth, one place above Tommy Killick’s men who have three games in hand on their Somerset opponents. The two sides know each other well after Poole beat beat their opponents on penalties in last season’s playoff semi-finals.
Despite the lack of game time, Poole are enjoying a strong league campaign thus far. They have only lost two in their twelve matches, and they hold up to six games in hand on each fellow league team. In fact as it stands, four wins from the five games in hand they have on leaders Chesham will put them at the top of the tree.
After disappointing cup defeats and a league defeat away to Hartley Wintney, the Dolphins did get back to winning ways last Saturday as they eased to victory at London side Walton Casuals 3-0. A first half brace from Harry Baker put the away side in control, and Will Spetch secured the three points in the second. The win puts them just two points behind Taunton with three more games to play.
September 14th was the last time Poole hosted a Southern Premier League South match at the Black Gold Stadium, when they were 3-1 victors over Harrow Borough, after goals from Harry Baker, Marvin Brooks and Luke Holmes. They have since played two cup ties at the Black Gold, exiting the FA Cup and Trophy with defeats to Hartley Wintney and Hayes & Yeading.
The away side Taunton are also enjoying a strong season so far. Coached by ex Bristol Rovers midfielder Michael Meaker, the Peacocks have won their last three league matches. They demolished Walton Casuals away 5-1, then beat Truro City 2-0 at home, before cruising to a 4-1 win over struggling Blackfield & Langley.
Last season the two sides met three times. In both league ties the home side edged out a 1-0 win, before drawing 1-1 in the all important playoff semi-final. The Dolphins won 4-3 on penalties to progress to the promotion match vs Metropolitan Police. A return to the National League South was not to be for Killick’s side however, as they lost 1-0.
Taunton will hope to travel to the Black Gold and gain revenge on the Dolphins, but the Dorset men will hope to continue good league form and pass their opposition in the table.