Ridgeons League Premier round-up

Match reports from this weekend's games in the Ridgeons League Premier Division.

Needham Market 2, Wroxham 2

Despite a clean sheet at either end at the end of the first half this was a high-quality 45 minutes of excellent passing movement.

First chance fell to last season's runner-up but Smy directed his header narrowly wide of the target.

The home side continued to press forward and a Berry shot was saved by Thornton who got his attack going only for the effort to peter out on the edge of the home area.

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The in-form Wroxham striker Cook was then completely through on goal but the home keeper Smith was off his line in a flash to rob the number nine cleanly on the edge of the 18-yard box to save an almost certain setback for the home team.

Minutes later Cook again exercised skilful ball control, beating three men in the space of a square metre and let fly, but Smith had intelligently narrowed the angle to palm away the fierce left footer.

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As the half ended both teams were still at it hammer and tongs and the second half showed great promise.

Half-time: Needham Market 0, Wroxham 0

Needham broke the deadlock five minutes after the break with a goal that sparked the game into life.

It was the result of a break down the right that led to a corner on the left and Scott Field turned the ball home past Thornton.

Almost at once the Yachtsmen hit back when they won a free-kick on the left - the ball was driven in by Howes and Josh Carus was on hand to turn the ball home from just outside the six-yard box.

With five minutes on the watch Wroxham stunned their hosts with a great goal that left them in the driving seat. Substitute Hoffman delivered a free-kick from the left and GRAHAM CHALLEN played a skipper's role to head the ball past Smith.

As the game headed towards full time Lemmon had to leave the field with a bleeding head wound for which Snell received a yellow card.

Then the Yachtsmen were stunned seven minutes into time added on when SCOTT FIELD forced home the equaliser for the game to end with honours even.

Needham Market: Smith, Brimstead, Pemberton, Bailey, Butler, Barber, Berry, Dennis, Smy, Field, Thrower

Subs: Snell, Sparkes, Agreicole, Evans, Horlock.

Wroxham: Thornton, Self, Howes, Challen, Carus, Wines, Harley, Lemmon, Cook, Crane, Gilmore

Subs: Goff, Hoffman.

Ref: G Atkins, Southend.

t Dereham 3, Tiptree 0.

Jason Hunt replaced the unavailable Adam Smith for the Magpies who were unlucky to lose at Stamford on Tuesday night.

On a blustery afternoon both sides struggled to play constructive football in the opening half hour. After the Essex side won a corner in the ninth minute the ball was quickly cleared up to Howell who crossed towards Barrett at the far post.

The home skipper was needlessly bundled over after entering the box by Townron with the referee immediately pointing to the spot. However, Terrington fired wide of the target from 12 yards.

Tiptree nearly made them pay minutes later when Watson blazed over the target from 16 yards after receiving John's knockdown.

Olly Willis suffered a reoccurrence of his midweek injury and was replaced by youth team player James Hadley. In the 20th minute visiting keeper Benstead charged from his line to clear from Howell. Tiptree then created a good chance with Townron failing to connect with Watson's low cross from the left. The game's play was being thwarted by poor passing.

Howell was clearly obstructed by White when en route to goal.

The same player then had a close range effort well saved by Benstead. However the loose ball was picked up by Sam Willis who slotted through to DANNY BEAUMONT who made no mistake from 10 yards to open the scoring in the 38th minute and give Dereham an interval lead.

Half-time: Dereham 1, Tiptree 0

Tiptree won a free kick on the edge of the area with Cross's low drive rounding the wall before being comfortably saved by Higgs in the 50th minute.

The visitors then won a corner but Dereham eventually cleared.

Benstead made a fine save to turn Terrington's fierce left-footer behind for a corner, from the resultant flag kick TERRINGTON'S in-swinging curler deceived keeper Benstead and crept inside his near post to increase Dereham's lead in the 59th minute.

Minutes later full-back Murfet deflected Howell's left foot shot inches over the crossbar. Dereham were now beginning to get on top and from their next attack Howell found Hunt just outside the box with the midfielder's right-foot drive whistling over the top.

Sam Willis picked up the ball on the left of the Tiptree area and curled a right foot shot goal-ward.

Incredibly full-back Cross ducked under the ball which headed inside Benstead's right-hand post to add to Dereham's tally in the 68th minute.

Howell then had a powerful drive well saved by the keeper before defender Cousins just failed to stab home Terrington's corner at the far post with Tiptree now pinned in their own half. When the visitors did venture forward Dereham defenders Cousins and Estoe-Smith were in commanding form however Higgs was forced to make a great save from John following English's cross from the right, minutes later Garner cleared Mills' low drive off the line with Higgs beaten. Benstead needed to tip Beaumont's teasing free kick behind for a corner as Dereham recommenced their assault on the visitors goal. On time Beaumont made a mazy run forward before firing wide. The Magpies produced an outstanding second half performance to record their third successive league win.

Dereham: J Higgs, O Willis, S Garner, P Cousins, J Eastoe-Smith, D Beaumont, N Howell, S Willis, J Hunt, G Barrett, C Terrington.

Subs: B Furlong, G Watts, J Brien, J Hadleigh.

Tiptree: A Benstead, S Murfet, B Cross, D Kreyling, L White, G Wraigh, D Rochester, J Watson, D John, T English, L Townron.

Subs: J Arlick, D Mills, K Inglish, M Belcher.

Ref: Mr R Beevor, Bungay.

t Felixstowe 1, Kirkley and Pakefield 3

After only two minutes Carter had a good strike that Danny Crump palmed away for a corner. A well-worked move by Felixstowe saw Claydon go close then a Phillips header was cleared off the line by Blois all in the first six minutes.

Henderson's speed took him past full-back Bloomfield and his hard- hit cross was knocked over the bar by the in-rushing Stone. Gilman made a cross-field run that set up Highfield whose shot lacked any pace in the 20th minute.

Highfield hustled Crump into a scrambled save just on the edge of the box. Then on 27 minutes Carter let fly for the second time in the match which brought Crump to his knees.

David Grimwood picked up a poor Pauling kick out and floated the ball back over the keeper's head and luckily for Kirkley the crossbar.

Gilman missed a sitter on the line from a headed pass from Highfield on 35 minutes but three minutes later Kirkley took a deserved lead after a fumble by keeper Crump.

Gilman got in the first effort that was blocked by the keeper and the ball fell kindly to HIGHFIELD who snapped up the chance first time to give Kirkley the lead.

In the swirling wind the ball came off keeper Crump's boot but fell kindly for Stone to hit in a curling shot just before a deserved break in difficult conditions.

Half-time: Felixstowe and Walton United 0, Kirkley and Pakefield 1

Within two minutes of the restart it was all square at 1-1, the ball fell loose on the left flank and PHILLIPS coolly slotted the ball with a left-foot shot into the roof of the net.

Kirkley were stung and Crump brought off two reflex saves to deny Gilmore and Highfield but he had no chance as a great finish by NATHAN STONE restored the Kirkley advantage when he swept past his full-back and intercepted a through ball and slid in an unstoppable shot into the corner of the net on 62 minutes.

The game was held up for a considerable period whilst Bodie Carter was stretchered off in the second half with a suspected broken leg, Lee Hunter taking his place.

The goal of the season then appeared for Kirkley after a scrappy spell when Chris Henderson beat three Felixstowe defenders in a mazy run on goal and finished by slamming the ball past Crump for 3-1.

Then a foul by Culver after a previous booking led to the Felixstowe midfielder's departure from the field with 15 minutes to go.

t Wivenhoe Town 5, Norwich United 2

Norwich United were forced into several changes with Adam Ferguson and Warren Preston both missing through suspension and there were debuts for new signings goalkeeper Shane Herbert and striker Keith Hetherington. The Planters were first to show in the third minute when a one-two between Ben Goddard and Hetherington saw Rutherford out quickly to deny Goddard on the edge of the area.

In the ninth minute Jake Imrie's cross from the left wing was glanced goalward by the head of Hetherington but Rutherford blocked with his arm.

Wivenhoe took the lead in the 14th minute when Sam Collins' cross from the left was headed home at the near post by Lee Underwood.

Norwich United equalised within 60 seconds when Goddard cut the ball back from the byline and Hetherington fired home with a strong shot from 10 yards.

Wivenhoe soon regained the lead in the 19th minute when a free-kick from wide on the left was driven home by Gareth Simpson inside Herbert's near post.

Wivenhoe increased their lead in the 26th minute from the penalty spot after Craig Roberts handled in the area, Simpson stepping up to slot home his second from the spot.

In the 36th minute the Planters had a penalty of their own when good work from Ben Garham and Seb Muddel released Page who was brought down by Wayne Goddard just inside the area. But Hetherington's spot kick was saved low to his right by Rutherford, who then proceeded to make two more saves as Hetherington followed up.

Just before the break Herbert did well to save from Danny May whose follow-up shot hit the bar and England following up hit the ball over the bar.

The Planters started brightly, Muddel releasing Goddard but the striker's shot was blocked.

In the 53rd minute the Planters had the ball in the net when Imrie's cross was touched back by Goddard to Muddel who netted from close range but the ball had already gone out of play.

Ten minutes later Simpson's deep free-kick was headed over at the far post by May.

Planters substitute Craig Beeden made an early impression when he came on as a 67th-minute substitute and in the 73rd minute he did well to release Tom Jeal down the left-hand side and then raced into the box to head home from Jeal's cross to the far post. The Planters' hopes were dashed in the 84th minute when Wivehoe substitute Allician Blake made progress down the right but was robbed in the area but the ball fell unkindly for the Planters and Sam Collins netted at the far post.

Wivenhoe completed the scoring three minutes from time when Underwood latched on to a long through-ball and slotted under the advancing Herbert.

Wivenhoe: P Rutherford, M Mitchell-Coop, S Collins, A Churchyard, K Coyle, D Kerrigan, D May, G Simpson, L Underwood, J England, W Goddard. Subs: A Hampson, J Nightingill, J Sargent, A Blake, S Bell.

Norwich: S Herbert, S Shipley, J Imrie, T Jeal, C Roberts, B Soanes, N Page, B Garnham, K Hetherington, B Goddard, S Muddel.

Subs: C Beeden, M Goulder, L Howlett, D Eastall.

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