Pinder at the double as Axminster Town net five

Axminster Town striker Ashley Small Picture SARAH MCCABE

Axminster Town striker Ashley Small Picture SARAH MCCABE - Credit: Archant

Axminster Town warmed up for their two East Devon derby matches over the coming week with a terrific 5-0 win at South Devon side Waldon Athletic.

Axminster Town striker Ashley Small Picture SARAH MCCABE

Axminster Town striker Ashley Small Picture SARAH MCCABE - Credit: Archant

The Tigers, who are at Sidmouth Town (7.30pm) on Tuesday night (April 16) and then at Honiton Town on Good Friday morning (11am), travelled having had to reshuffle the pack to deal with the unavailability of first team regulars Connor Hannaford (at a christening), Nathan Antat (missing injured) and Jacob Rowe ( away on holiday).

The Town team was sent out with the instructions to do a professional job against one of the leagues newcomers.

The Tigers proved to be in an unforgiving mood and found themselves a goal to the good after just 19 seconds when Ben Allen played in Luke Finn and his first-time shot completely caught out the home keeper who was out of position and so could do nothing but watch Finn’s 18 yard drop into an empty net. Ten minutes later Tony Pinder received the ball inside the 18 yard box where he promptly danced round a couple of defenders before doubling the lead.

With Town in complete control, they added a third goal 10 minutes before the break with Pinder doubling his tally and netting his 28th goal of the season, heading home a terrific cross from Kieran Daniels.

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Just before the break, Pinder was denied his hat-trick after the home keeper pulled off a sensational save, diving at full length to push the Town man’s header away to safety.

After the half-time oranges the home side gave it a good go and effectively went for broke throwing numbers forward to try and get back into the game.

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However, on the hour mark they pressed the self-destruct button when a midfield player tried to pass the ball back to the home keeper, and an alert Ashley Small intercepted the ball and rounded the gloves man with ease netting Axminster’s fourth goal and his 22nd of an impressive campaign.

Pinder, Reece McCabe and Will Hellier went onto have half chances as clearly by the 70th minute Waldon were well beaten and by now were just trying to keep the score down.

With 10 minutes remaining, Connor Swingler added salt to the wound by jinxing past some heavy challenges before calmly slotting past the keeper.

Speaking after the game, Town joint manager, Josh Stunell, said: “Jonny {fellow joint boss John Hurford) and myself were delighted with the way the lads applied themselves. It’s not an easy place to go and, if you are not mentally switched on, you could quite easily come unstuck.

“ Waldon’s management were very gracious in defeat, and, as a team, they worked hard and never gave up and we wish them well for the future as they clearly have ambition to progress.”

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