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Torquay United put in a brilliant performance to end a desperate season

Gulls end on a high note with the demolition of Havant and Waterlooville

Torquay United welcomed the summer with a five-star performance to cap perhaps the most turbulent season in the club’s history.

Administration, takeover negotiations, points deductions and a relegation fight were a long way from people’s expectations when the campaign started, but the Gulls ticked an important box by securing their status in the National League South with a win over Taunton on Tuesday night.

That win eased the pressure ahead of a final day visit from relegated Havant & Waterloovile and the Gulls produced a 5-0 down that could have been much more, with goals from Brad Ash, Austen Booth, Will Jenkins Davies (2) and Arkell Jude -Boyd.

“Congratulations to the players, they put in a great performance in the first half and we wanted to end the season on a high,” said interim manager Aaron Downes.

“The season hasn’t been what we wanted, but we put in a great performance today and we could have comfortably scored twelve. It was a great performance and hopefully everyone goes home happy.

“Hopefully we can look to the future with a little positivity. The players were professional and that was great to see. We talked about it being a dead rubber, but that wasn’t against our guys, they showed they cared.

“As a group we wanted to give something back.

“The attitude the players have shown in recent months, this was just a reward for them and they played fantastic in a few moments. Today’s performance has given people value for their money.

“There was no pressure and they played with freedom. In a pressured situation on Tuesday evening they came up trumps, and today they showed what they’ve got. That’s what we tried to get out of them, especially in the last third, to have the freedom and the courage to be inventive.

“The tempo of the game dropped (second half) and that is logical, but we were desperate to get a clean sheet. At one point it looked like a shooting gallery. We could have been a bit more clinical, but everyone took something away from the match.”

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