Newport County AFC suffered their second defeat of the League Two season as they fell to a 3-1 reverse away at Colchester United.
The Exiles did open the scoring on five minutes through Tristan Abrahams, but Colchester fought back to take all three points through a Ryan Jackson deflected goal, Ben Stevenson and Courtney Senior.
Michael Flynn elected to make two changes to the starting side which fought back for a point against Crawley Town at Rodney Parade in midweek.
Captain Joss Labadie and Jamille Matt were replaced by George Nurse – his first Football League start – and Tristan Abrahams as County decided to match their hosts in a 4-4-2 formation.
Nurse was utilised in more of a left midfield role with Willmott on the right as County got a lot of success down the sides in the first half with pace being the way to go to create chances in Colchester.
The Exiles were by far and above the better side in the opening half hour and made the ascendency early on as Tristan Abrahams grabbed his 4th of the season inside five minutes.
Josh Sheehan has been simply sensational all season for the Exiles and he was again at the fore of the goal, playing a crisp splitting pass through Tom Eastman and Cohen Bramall following a marauding run to allow Abrahams to tuck a shot under the home goalkeeper.
Unfortunately that was basically all in terms of clear cut chances for the Exiles as Colchester took control from there and deservedly secured themselves all three points.
Luke Norris saw a header hacked away off the line by Robbie Willmott on nine minutes, Kwame Poku shot wide shortly after, before they eventually equalised in the 32nd minute.
It was really harsh on County at the time as they were holding back the onslaught from Colchester to good effect but after George Nurse slipped under the greasy conditions, Ryan Jackson cut inside and saw a shot deflected past the helpless Tom King.
County couldn’t quite hold out until half time as Colchester forced home their ascendency with three minutes to go in order to take a lead into half time.
Norris saw another shot saved, Courtney Senior saw two tame efforts go wide, before they did get the second goal when Ben Stevenson rifled one into the top corner with King again helpless.
Colchester continued to press home the advantage in the second half and they wrapped things up as a contest with fifteen minutes remaining.
There’s no doubting that the strikes were of sheet quality by the home side and this was another cracker from Senior, the forward driving across the penalty area before rifling into the top corner.
Colchester United (4-4-2): Dean Gerken, Ryan Jackson, Tom Eastman, Luke Prosser (C), Cohen Bramall, Courtney Senior (Callum Harriott 76’), Ben Stevenson, Brandon Comley, Kwame Poku (Luke Gambin 68’), Luke Norris, Frank Nouble (Jevani Brown 90’)
Subs not used: Ross, Sowunmi, Sarpong-Wiredu, Clampin
Newport County AFC (4-4-2): Tom King, Danny McNamara, Mark O’Brien (C), Ryan Inniss, Ryan Haynes, Robbie Willmott, Josh Sheehan, Scot Bennett, George Nurse, Padraig Amond (Matty Dolan 80’), Tristan Abrahams
Subs not used: Townsend, Whitely, Collins, Poleon
Referee: James Oldham
Attendance: 2,955 (180 AWAY)
Next up for County: Salford City (2nd November 2019) HOME