Helston Athletic 1, Plymouth Argyle 3

ALEX Fletcher scored twice as South West Peninsula League Premier leaders Plymouth Argyle squeezed past a determined Helston Athletic side at Kellaway Park on Saturday.

The score didn't tell the full story as the Blues were more than a match for the division's top side, with all three of Argyle's goals coming against the run of play.

Ryan Law put the Pilgrims in front with a fine finish in the 22nd minute before Fletcher doubled the lead early in the second half.

George Roberts bundled the ball in from close range to give the home side hope with ten minutes to go, but Fletcher scored another breakaway goal in injury-time to make sure of the points.

Helston were on the front foot early on with Alfie Flack the first to test Tyler Coombes in the Argyle goal.

Argyle, as ever, had plenty of quality in their side, with Calum Dyson spurning a good chance for the visitors soon after, before Harrison Jewell shot wide with a scissor kick effort.

The home side were causing plenty of problems for the visitors' youthful back four, but it was Argyle who broke the deadlock on 22 minutes when Law who picked up the left side of the box and produced an excellent finish.

Helston responded well and enjoyed the better of the remainder of the half, with Ryan Beattie coming close on two occasions while early substitute Al Williams - replacing the injured Ryan Chinn after ten minutes - fired a shot on target from distance.

Argyle responded with chances of their own from Dyson and Lionel Ainsworth, while Flack almost squeezed a shot in at Coombes' near post just before the half-time whistle.

The Blues continued their dominance when they returned from the second half. Jamie Thirkle curled a shot narrowly wide before Jewell almost bundled the ball home from a corner kick.

But Argyle struck a devastating blow from a sweeping counter attack on the hour, with Fletcher able to round Barrie Wyatt and compose himself before slamming the ball in from six yards.

The home side were still not ready to give up, with Kai Cornish sending two shots wide before Thirkle was presented the ball eight yards out but scuffed the effort.

Helston finally got the goal they deserved in the 81st minute with Roberts poking the ball over the line from two yards after Al Williams' shot was saved by Coombes.

The final few minutes became attack versus defence and Helston bombarded the Argyle back line, but a final blow came in the form of another swift counter in injury-time, with Fletcher again rounding Wyatt and slotting into the empty net to seal victory.

Helston: B Wyatt, K Davies, G Roberts, R Beattie, J Storey (J Flamank 70), H Jewell, R Chinn (A Williams 11), M Bye, K Cornish, A Flack (P Cattran 85), J Thirkle. Subs (unused): S Beattie, K Daughtery.

Plymouth: T Coombes, J Seery (I Burden 74), R Law, J Boyd M Peck, O Tomlinson, L Ainsworth, R Garside, C Dyson, A Battle, A Fletcher. Subs (unused): R Wilson, R Collom.

  • Helston's first game of 2019 is a trip to Wadebridge Town in the Cornwall Senior Cup third round on Saturday, January 5 (kick-off 2pm).