A scintillating second half performance saw Exmouth Town overcome the Royal Marines Association football side and win the renamed Exmouth Community Rose Bowl, a competition played for by Exmouth sides and the Royal Marines as a sporting competition but not restricted to football, writes John Dibsdall.

For the first 30 minutes, there was nothing between the sides, as Town had a couple of half-chances well saved and Chris Wright had to be alert to save one well-struck effort. The best chance was a penalty for the Marines but the strike cleared the crossbar.

A mix-up in the defence allowed Harvey Dorothy to slot home in the corner for Town’s opener before an Ethan Slater volley doubled the lead before half time.

The floodgates opened as Town made changes for the second half. Dean Billingsley calmly converted one cross before racing clear for his second.

And then the moment Town supporters had been waiting for since early December. A left foot volley, a close range finish and a 25-yard free-kick into the top corner. Welcome back Levi Landricombe as he looks to regain match fitness following his knee operation. Has he ever been away?

An excellent run and finish from a trialist and another well-taken pre-season goal for Alec Holifield saw Town run out 9-0 winners in front of another healthy crowd of 264. Acting captain James Richards received the Rose Bowl, won by the club for the first time since 2004.

This Friday, Town are home to Axminster Town as they complete their warm-up games before the season starts in earnest next Saturday with a trip to Falmouth in the FA Cup.

Budleigh Salterton are also gearing up for the new season and the Robins produced a hugely encouraging performance to hold Western League visitors Ilfracombe Town to a 0-0 draw. Budleigh 2nds enjoyed a powerful 7-2 friendly victory over East Budleigh.

Budleigh begin their Devon Football League campaign with a visit from Thorverton on August 9 and then travel to Plymouth Marjon on August 12.

The Robins also introduced a new signing this week, with Joe Byrne making the move from Honiton Town. This came hot on the heels of a dominant 6-0 pre-season win at Kentisbeare, as excitement builds for return of football.