SWINDON Supermarine manager Dave Webb is pleased with the direction his side are heading in after pushing League Two side Newport County all the way in their 4-3 defeat.

A Conor Thompson goal, tapping in Ryan Campbell's shot after a well-worked move down the right, reduced the deficit at half-time, with the visitors to the Webbswood having established a two goal advantage through wide man Lamar Reynolds and Marine’s Jack Alexander turning into his own net.

Newport regained their two-goal cushion after the break through Robbie Wilmott’s free-kick, before Marine again replied through TJ Bohane’s fine set-piece, which nestled into the top corner from 25 yards out.

The travelling side looked to have put the game to bed with 15 minutes left on the clock when Marlon Jackson rounded Marine stopper Josh Hill, recently released by Forest Green Rovers, but Marine again responded almost immediately through Campbell.

Having lost 7-1 to Swindon Town the week prior, with a 2-1 loss to Gloucester City last Tuesday night, Webb was pleased to see the improvement being shown by his side during what is a tough pre-season schedule.

“It was a big improvement from last week and shows the difference a week can make really,” he said.

“I think our fitness levels were far greater than they were last week. We obviously had a good run out on Tuesday against Gloucester City, a game we competed well in and I think we have played some really good stuff today and competed against a League Two side.

“We’ve got a lot from today, as I knew we would through these games.

“The results are irrelevant, you’re looking for individual performances, a group that are working hard for each other and if you can show a little bit of quality, which I think we did in some of the goals, then the future is looking very bright.

“With the players we are going to bring in and the ones that are already here, we have got a really strong group.”

As well as goalkeeper Hill, there was a place in the starting line-up for former Swindon midfielder Lee Marshall, who was at Bath City last season and is also attracting interest from National League South side Chippenham Town.

Webb is also hopeful of securing the services of North Leigh’s Aaron Woodley, who is recovering from a knee injury, however, Callum Parsons has left the club.

Meanwhile, Mark Collier’s Chippenham side kicked off their pre-season with a 1-1 draw at Frome Town, Andy Sandell scoring from the penalty spot.

Hellenic League Premier Division side Highworth Town were 3-1 victors over Wroughton, Royal Wootton Bassett Town defeated Corsham Town 2-1 and Fairford Town played out a 3-3 draw away at Ardley United.

Division One West side Shrivenham ran out 2-0 winners over Wallingford Town.