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Poole Town 7-0 Frome Town – Southern Premier Division, Mon. 25th August.

Frome Town won’t look back on their Summer Bank Holiday trip to the seaside with any fondness as a disastrous match saw them concede six second half goals allowing Poole to double their goal tally for the season and move to the top of the table thanks to a hat trick from Bournemouth loan signing Josh O’Hanlon.

Frome were desperate to halt a run of four successive defeats, but, even with Matt Smith and Rhys Baggridge returning to the side, they  were still missing Jack Vallis, Ben Thomson and Kris Miller, though Matt Groves returned to the squad after re-signing.

In pouring rain, but on a pitch that was looking good, Frome played pretty well in the first 10 minutes, playing some good football and looking comfortable on the ball, but Poole then took the lead in the 18th minute with their first attempt as Josh Ford gave away possession, allowing Poole break and Luke Burbridge hit a deflected shot that looped over Darren Chitty into the goal.

The 21st minute saw Frome break well allowing Ricky Hulbert to shoot from 25 yards but the shot was inaccurate and, soon after, Chitty brought off an excellent save to deny a  volley from Jamie Whisken who was up for corner that had only been partially cleared.

Poole started to turn the screw now and a missed defensive challenge gave Poole a chance. but Chitty again excelled with a great save to deny Luke Burbridge and the follow up on the rebound was over bar

Burbridge continued to cause the Frome defence problems and in the 29th minute he hit a great cross from the right that found MIke Gosney unmarked, only for him to fire well wide from close in when it seemed easier to score than to miss.

Frome’s “backs to the wall” performance continued and Chitty brought off another good save with his feet to deny Bournemouth loan signing  18 year old O’Hanlon, a player who had attracted attention from several leading Premiership clubs before committing to Bournemouth on a three year deal.

At half time with the score 1-0, Frome were still in with a shout, but the second Poole goal arrived in the 48th minute as a Poole corner was not cleared, the ball was chipped back towards goal, hit the bar and the unmarked O’Hanlon smashed it high into net.

After Mark Francis had gone inches wide with a turn, run and strike from distance Poole scored their third as the midfield was carved open and great O’Hanlon strike flew past Chitty.

O’Hanlon almost completed his hat trick in the 57th, but was denied by a good blocking tackle from Mark Cooper, but then Frome had a chance as Tom Golledge flicked a ball forward to Francis reaches but his first time shot cleared the bar.

After Aaron Oakey had picked up a yellow for hauling  down an attacker right on the edge of the box, the resulting free kick led to Poole’s fourth goal as Mike Walker headed home easily in the 61st minute, and with Mike Gosney adding a fifth a minute later, the match was threatening to become a rout.

O’Hanlon completed his hat trick as Poole intercepted a ball in their own half, raced forward and O’Hanlon cleverly timed his run to avoid the offside flag and outpaced Baggridge to score the sixth.

The 70th minute saw Chitty make a great double save to deny Poole as they looked like scoring every time they attacked, and the 83rd saw a Poole goal disallowed for offside as Frome failed to clear their lines from a corner.

Poole’s seventh arrived in the 87th as a great long range strike from Neil Martin gave Chitty no chance, and to add insult to injury, a consolation goal for Frome was disallowed for offside in the 90th after Francis headed home an Alex Rigley cross.

This result means that Saturday’s home match against Banbury takes on a huge significance for Frome as Banbury are one of only two clubs below them, with no points and an equal negative goal difference.

Crowd: 251. Entertainment Value: 3