IN what was billed as the biggest league match in East Cowes for almost three decades, Newport earned the bragging rights with a 2-0 win over Vics in front of a bumper crowd at Beatrice Avenue.

In the Sydenhams Wessex Division 1 derby clash, Newport were worthy winners in a scrappy game which offered very little free-flowing football on quite a heavy pitch this afternoon.

Vics had the better of the early exchanges, with one shot from the left flapped away for a corner by stand-in keeper Joe McCormack, who has been playing brilliantly for West Wight this season in Division 1 of the Isle of Wight League.

Then a minute later, Alex Przespolewski was in acres of space when he volleyed over from about eight yards.

Newport earned a free kick in a dangerous position, centrally outside the Vics penalty box on 12 minutes.

Former East Cowes striker Jordan Browne struck it perfectly and was unlucky to see it crash back off the upright and back into play.

Vics missed a couple more half chances just before the half-hour mark and were made to pay on 38 minutes when Liam Triggs pounced on a long clearance which flat-footed the Vics defence, and slotted home under advancing keeper Karl Steinbourne-Busse to open the scoring.

Just before the break, Vics' livewire striker Elias Ahmed cut inside from the right and let fly, which was well deflected wide.

From the resulting corner, Ahmed leapt like a salmon, but his header drifted just wide,

Vics came out for the second half looking rejuvenated, stringing their passing game together, but lacking imagination in the final third.

But they almost got themselves back on level terms when the ball fell nicely to Przespolewski, who belted it just over the Port crossbar.

Five minutes later, Jordan Chapman, made space for a shot just outside the Newport box, but his weak effort was saved by McCormack.

In a carbon-copy moment from the first half on the hour-mark, a free kick, centrally-placed, was superby struck by the excellent Connor Kelly, who watched it crash back off the bar, with Jared Wetherick blasting the rebound high and wide.    

As Vics pushed forward seeking an equaliser, Newport began to look more dangerous on the counter-attack and it was Browne close again — dragging his shot from the right edge of the penalty box just wide of the far post on 72 minutes.

But Newport doubled their lead just a minute later when a ball in from the left, found Mark Taylor on the edge of the penalty area, who struck it first time with his left foot and it flew into the far corner.

Triggs could have got his second on 81 minutes when he did well to drill a first-time shot from the left of the box, which was well saved by Steinbourne-Busse at his near post.

After the game, Vics boss Steve Brougham said: "We needed to take those chances we had when we were on top."

Cowes Sports had a bit of a Christmas hangover at home to Baffins Milton Rovers at Westwood Park, losing 3-1 in the Sydenhams Wessex Premier league.

The visitors dominated the first half, going a goal up after only three minutes and hitting the post — but 1-0 is how it stayed up until the interval.

In the second half, the Yachtsmen livened up and equalised through Gareth Bricknell — his second in as many games — who finished well when one-on-one with the Baffins keeper.

However, on the hour mark, Baffins regained their lead with a breakaway goal, with the match ending as a contest on 85 minutes with a third for the visitors.