Double victory secures second top three finish

Joseph Bulmer

Ilfracombe claim third spot with wins against Bristol Manor Farm and Brislington

ILFRACOMBE Town wrapped up their Toolstation Western League season with their second 2-1 win in three days.

Wins at Bristol Manor Farm on Saturday and Brislington on Monday secured the Bluebirds a third-place Premier Division finish for the second year running.

Having beaten Manor Farm on penalties in the Les Phillips Cup semi-final three weeks earlier, there was always going to be a bit of an edge to the game at Portway.

In fact, Saturday’s game was the third time the sides have met in the last six weeks, first blood going to Farm with a 1-0 win at Marlborough Park on March 15.

The action didn’t take long to get going, Steve Holland finding the net for Ilfracombe after the hosts made a hash of a back-pass with less than a minute played.

A little more than 10 minutes later, ‘Combe found themselves 2-0 up when Mark Clunie crashed in an unstoppable effort past goalkeeper Lee Ballard.

Farm pulled one back on the half-hour mark when Kye Thomas’ cross somehow found the net but Ilfracombe defended well in the second half to see out the match.

On Monday, Holland was on target again as he took his season’s goal tally to 11 in the win at Brislington on Monday. Matt Downing also scored for ‘Combe in the 2-1 win at Ironmould Lane.

Barnstaple finished their season on Saturday with a 2-1 defeat at home to Wells City.

Matt Hurley put Wells 1-0 up before the break with a chip over Barum goalkeeper Luke Purnell.

Barnstaple came out stronger in the second half and were unlucky to see efforts by Sam Chitty and Kyle Bassett cannon back off the woodwork.

Instead Mike Charlton put the visitors 2-0 up with a cleverly worked free-kick although Chitty did eventually find the net in the dying seconds with a long range effort.

Barnstaple finish the season in 11th place, compared to 15th in the 2009-10 season.


Ilfracombe will be hoping to add some gloss to their season when they travel to Wells for the final of the Les Phillips Cup on Saturday.

The Bluebirds play Cadbury Heath, who finished fourth in Division One this season.

Kick-off at the Athletic Ground is 3pm.