CIRENCESTER TOWN 1 BRIDGWATER TOWN 6
A PENALTY save on a debut would normally make for a happy bow, but try telling that to new Cirencester goalkeeper Dave Evans.
Signed from Slimbridge in time to make his first Centurions start against Bridgwater, Evans was left largely helpless as Bridgwater enjoyed some early festive treats from their hosts.
On an afternoon of little cheer for the hosts, it took until injury time for Ben Wells to register a shot on target, but his consolation goal was of little consequence.
Starting brightly, the hosts carved out a few early half chances but Scott Griffin's diving header failed to hit the target and Sam Packer was robbed of the ball at a crucial moment.
Evans' first action was to concede the 20th minute penalty from which Bridgwater took the lead.
Racing to cut off Ross McNab's purposeful run into the box, Evans was left helpless as the ball held up on a soggy pitch and after getting to the ball second, a spot kick was awarded.
Craig Veal comfortably shot home past the dive of the Cirencester keeper to give the visitors a lead that they never looked like relinquishing.
McNab fired home the second goal five minutes later, expertly finishing from 12 yards after Jon Vance had picked his way through the Ciren defence.
Chris Thompson fired a shot wide five minutes before the break as Ciren attempted a comeback, but the visitors had the game all-but sewn up in the final minute of the half as McNab raced through to net his second.
Vance made it four within two minutes of the restart, his shot somehow flying through Evans' hands and creeping over the line in the view of the assistant referee.
Evans redeemed that error on 54 minutes however, after Ellis Dunton had tripped Joe McClennan in the box, the former Slimbridge man flying to his left to repel Veal's spot-kick.
But Zayne Simpson did indeed make it five when he was afforded far too much space in the area to fire past Evans for the visitors' 72nd minute fifth.
And three minutes later, the half-dozen was secured as Vance was allowed to nip behind the Cirencester defence and beat a helpless Evans.
Wells did give the Centurions fans who stayed to support their team some cheer with a lovely injury time volley, but the game had long-since ended as a contest.
Cirencester Town: D Evans, N Hawkins (J Shepherd, 70), E Dunton, J Mortimer-Jones, J Beeden, R Allaway, B Wells, C Thompson, S Packer, S Griffin, A Bennett (G Washbourne, 76). Not used: J Reid.