Paulton suffered their third consecutive defeat in all competitions after a disappointing first half left them 3-0 down at half-time.

Bideford took the lead on fourteen minutes through route one football, after a goal kick was flicked on by ‘Biddy’’s target man, Craig Duff, which put the advancing Billy Seymour through on goal who calmly slotted the ball under AJ Sesay to take the lead.

Paulton looked to respond immediately, and a good passing move put Liam Monelle in down the right-hand side, his cross just managing to evade the on-rushing Kailan Gould.

As the game was beginning to open up, Paulton’s Camen Harvery was inexplicably booked by the referee for a 50/50 challenge. Soon after, Bideford doubled their lead on the 24th minute after a misplaced pass by Joe Guest put Seymour through on goal again, who finished calmly.

With the industrious front three of Gould, Monelle and Ball looking to get Paulton back in the game, Rovers misery was compounded on the 40th minute, when Bideford scored a carbon copy of the first goal – a goal kick, flicked on by Duff, which put Seymour through to grab his hat-trick and his side’s third.

Paulton came out fighting in the second half looking to take the game to Bideford, and almost got one goal back in the 53rd minute after a fumble by the Bideford keeper, Steve Oliver. The ball dropped to Monelle in the penalty area, who just couldn’t get enough power on the shot for it reach the goal before being cleared off the line.

Moments after, Paulton’s Harrison was replaced by Byrne on 58 minutes, and Rovers got the goal they deserved after a flick on by Monelle fell to Jack Ball, who did well to turn away from the Biddy defence and hammer the ball home.

Paulton huffed and puffed for the remainder of the second half, but could not find a further breakthrough, leaving Bideford to take all three points back home to Devon.

Steve Longden