BILLY Turley was back to his very best as Oxford United returned to winning ways at relegation-threatened Weymouth.

Phil Trainer got the only goal of the game with 14 minutes to go, but it was Turley who had set up a victory chance with some top-class goalkeeping in the first half.

United's experienced keeper has made a couple of costly errors in recent home games, and he looked as though he had a point to prove as he made a string of fine saves.

Indeed, there was a spell in the first half when he dominated procedings, showing great alertness off his line and in pulling off two superb reaction saves.

United's winner, giving them their third victory in four games, came when Trainer looped a header over floundering keeper Stephen Henderson after Eddie Anaclet had picked him out with a neat chip to the far post.

And it was Yemi Odubade, coming on as a sub and injecting some pace up front, who had provided the impetus for Darren Patterson's men.

Until then, in truth, it had been a poor game, with Turley's quality lighting up an otherwise unexciting encounter.

Soon after the start, ex-Didcot Town striker Stuart Beavon and James Coutts worked a clever one-two on the edge of the box, but Turley was quickly out to halt the move.

The keeper then pawed away Coutts's curling shot from the left for a corner.

And moments later, after another clever combination between Beavon and Mark Convery, Turley showed great sharpness by blocking off Beavon's cutback from the bye-line.

The pitch at the Wessex Stadium was bathed in sunshine and, to their credit, both teams tried to keep the ball on the ground, in often windy conditions.

The game took a while to get going as both sides sized each other up.

In the early exchanges U's strikers Justin Richards and Matt Green got little change out of the big Weymouth centre backs, Chris Blackburn and Matt Bailey, though Richards managed to escape his marker once for a flicked header from Phil Trainer's right-footed cross. It was a good effort, but drifted just past the far post.

It was the Terras who had the first real chance of the game on 13 minutes. The lively Convery got into space for a shot, but Turley saved down to his right.

Weymouth forced the first corner, on 23 minutes, but Barry Quinn headed it powerfully away. Matt Day, deputising for the suspended Luke Foster, also made some timely challenges.

United broke well from defence, through James Clarke's break down the right, and then with Green showing some sklilful footwork, to earn their first corner seven minutes before half-time, and they almost scored from it.

Trainer's flagkick was dropped by goalkeeper Henderson, Quinn couldn't really connect with his header, and Day, coming in at the far post, then saw his goalbound shopt blocked by a Weymouth defender's back.

Anton Robinson's sharp turn deceived Quinn, but the midfielder then volleyed high and wide of the Oxford goal.

The visitors were playing with the wind in the second half, but they still found it difficult to put together meaningful moves.

A rare scoring opportunity came when Hand made a good trackle deep in his own half, then Murray advanced 40 yards and had a shot, which skimmed low past Henderson, but three yards wide.

Darren Patterson replaced Green and Richards with Yemi odubade and Craig McAllister with 20 minutes to go, and Odubade immediately used his pace to win a corner.

The corner was dropped by Henderson, who had dropped just about every cross and corner all afternoon, but the ref blew for a foul before Hand delicately chipped the loose ball into an empty net.

A few minutes later at the other end, the U's had a big let-off. Michael Malcolm turned Quinn, but with just Turley to beat eight yards out, he shot wide.

Odubade's arrival helped to stretch a tiring Weymouth back line, and Trainer applied the coup de grace with a tidy finish in front of the U's fans.

Odubade also produced a good strike when McAllister laid the ball back to im 20 yards out, but this time Henderson got down to save.

Henderson then made an almighty mess of a goal kick, McAllister pounced on it, but then produced a poor finish with just the keeper to beat, Henderson saving it easily.

As Weymouth pushed forward, they left big holes at the back, and United might easily have got a second goal.

Hand hit a stunning 45-yard shot after seeing Henderson off his line, and it smashed against the bar. Then Trainer had a shot turned onto the post by the keeper - the woodwork hit twice in 20 seconds.

Oxford Utd: Turley, Clarke, Quinn, Day, Howard, Anaclet, Hand, Murray, Trainer, Richards, Green. Subs not used: Pettefer, Rose, Fisher.

Booked: Odubade, Quinn.

Att: 1,649.