Ridgeons League round-up

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

PREMIER DIVISION

t WROXHAM 1, HARWICH & PARKESTON 0

by Roy Webster

Referee Stephen Artis had issued two red cards and four yellows by the interval.

In the 16th minute Paul Cook was shown red for colliding with the keeper and Steve Harley was shown yellow for attempting to point out it was a 50-50 ball with Nathan Munson.

Immediately after Danny White had a clear chance to put the Yachtsmen ahead but blazed over from eight yards and then immediately was shown yellow for what the referee decided was a late tackle on Stace.

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The visitors' Adam Cheeseworth was booked and what little positive play was achieved between these incidents was highlighted by McAnally who saved point-blank from Bethell.

The referee sent off the visiting number four Adam Warren - a debatable decision in the minds of the touchline faithful.

Then his brother Ben Warren was shown yellow for asking the question and so the teams were now completely even with 10 players apiece.

Again Wroxham could have gone ahead when Harley delivered an excellent through-ball to White who then prodded it too far ahead, allowing Munson to boot clear.

Half-time Wroxham 0, Harwich and Parkeston 0

Heavy showers turned the surface into skid-pan conditions and the quality of play deteriorated further. The referee issued one more

yellow card to visiting player Carmichael.

A draw seemed on the cards when in the last two minutes defender GAVIN PAULING let fly from 35 yards with a splendid daisy-cutter that Munson appeared to have covered, but the ball slipped through his hands into the back of the net for three vital points to keep Wroxham in the running for a top-three finish.

Wroxham: McAnally, Pauling, Howes, Challen, Halliday, Self, White, Lemmon, Cook, Harley, Gilmore. Subs: Carus, Key.

Harwich and Parkeston: Munson, Cheeseworthy, B Warren, A Warren, Wignall, Stace, B Bethell, Calver, Head, D Bethell, Wake. Subs: Brundall, Carmichael, Good, Harris, Hewitt.

Referee: Stephen Artis.

t WALSHAM-LE-WILLOWS 2, KIRKLEY & PAKEFIELD 1

by Stuart Baker

On a very sticky pitch Walsham-le-Willows had claims for a penalty turned on four minutes when Ryan Foster took a tumble after a James Cole tackle.

Neither keeper had a serious shot to save in the first 15 minutes. Lewis Blois sent a 40-yard cross-field ball to Ryan DeCoteau and the ball zipped off the greasy surface a foot wide from 25 yards out.

As the game wore on Willows, against the wind, were snuffed out by some sound defending from Jefford and Cole as the halfway point in the match was reached.

Walsham forced a couple of corners on the left which came to nothing in the wind. Henderson got some rough treatment and went off injured, to be replaced by Tarren Grint.

Straight away a brilliant strike by Liam Harvey-Cooper changed the game on 34 minutes when from a corner HARVEY-COOPER snapped up the ball 35 yards out which flew past keeper Lynn giving Kirkley a deserved lead.

As half-time approached it was still Kirkley in the ascendancy with Blois and Fox whipping in some fine balls into the area and Dawson working overtime for the visitors in midfield.

Half-time: Walsham-le-Willows 0, Kirkley and Pakefield 1

Walsham came at Kirkley with all guns blazing. But Kirkley relieved the pressure when Dawson threaded a pass to goalscorer Harvey-Cooper who won a corner.

After a great stop by Jefford on 57 minutes the sparse crowd saw the ball come back into the box and GARY NEWMAN stuck out a foot and diverted a pass that stranded Woodcock for a rather lucky goal.

Kirkley were up against it and Cole got his body in line with a Foster blockbuster shot on 69 minutes.

Horton became the second substitution for Kirkley, beefing up the midfield and he set up Harvey-Cooper for a shot that hit the side netting with the keeper just getting a hand to it for a Kirkley corner.

It was route-one football as Walsham stole the lead in the 79th minute. Keeper Lynn launched the ball with the wind a massive 100 yards into the other box and NEWMAN was on target again as he out-jumped Woodcock to head in.

One last throw of the dice by the visitors saw Harvey-Cooper buzzing down the right wing and crossed into the danger area to find Stone who was very unlucky with his shot which was spooned away by keeper Lynn.

As the game reached the final second there was an almighty skirmish outside the home penalty area and Kirkley centre-forward Nathan Stone got his marching orders from the referee.

Walsham le Willows: B Lynn, G Newman, A Cusack, N Clarke, T Newman, R Partridge, S Thorgold, R Foster, G Ross, J Tateham, P Musgrove. Subs: W Brown, W Proctor, C Brock, A Ross.

Kirkley & Pakefield: R Woodcock, R Decoteau, L Blois, J Jefford, J Cole, I Dawson, L Harvey-Cooper, J Fox, N Stone, S Manning, C Henderson, Subs: R Horton, D Tacon, T Grint.

Referee: Mr R P Feerick (Cambridge).

t NORWICH UTD 0, STANWAY ROVERS 2

by Norman Bygrave

Stanway started the stronger and from a first minute corner Luke Callender hit over the bar from close range.

Then Planters had their first chance in the sixth minute when Nathan Thompson's header from a left-wing cross went wide of the far post.

Four minutes later Tom Jeal sent Thompson clear of the Stanway defence but his shot was saved by keeper Michael Church.

Stanway took the lead in the 17th minute when CALLENDER'S shot took a small deflection, looped over Nathan Pauling and dipped under the bar.

Four minutes later a quick break saw Sam Newson's shot blocked well by Pauling. Immediately at the other end Thompson was denied by a good save by Church and Shaun Bammant failed to get the follow-up on target.

On the half-hour Jeal's cross from the right was headed goalward by Gavin Frost but once again Church denied the Planters with a good reaction save at the far post.

Half-time: Norwich United 0, Stanway Rovers 1

Stanway won a corner four minutes after the break and the flag-kick was flicked on to Sam Newson whose shot at the far post was cleared off the line.

Two minutes later Martyn Magee's shot from outside the area flew wide. A quick break from Stanway saw Ben Newson in space on the right but his shot was well saved by Pauling.

On the hour another Stanway corner led to a goalmouth scramble and Pauling saved on the line before the ball was cleared.

The Planters came closest to equalising in the 69th minute when a strong run down the right by Nathan Page saw him take the ball to the byline for his cross/ shot to come off the far post and was deflected inches wide off the legs of a defender.

In the 75th minute Pauling once again saved from Sam Newson and Callendar following up hit the rebound wide.

Stanway sealed victory in the 85th minute when SAM NEWSON latched onto a long through ball and as he ran into the area he was brought down - and he picked himself up to score from the spot.

Norwich United: N Pauling, S Shipley, A Ferguson, G Frost, C Roberts, W Preston, T Jeal, M Magee, S Bammant, N Thompson, N Page. Subs: L Howlett, J Hull, N Bugdale, K Hetherington.

Stanway Rovers: M Church, M Curtis, L Bailey, A Drennan, S Owen, R Norfolk, B Newson, A Harrop, S Newson, L Callender, J Harewood. Subs: D Cook, L Read, M Cheek, J Wright.

Referee: Mr S Meale

DIVISION ONE

t GRANTHAM ATHLETIC 6, THETFORD TOWN 1

by Mike Fields

Thetford welcomed back Crawshaw at the heart of their defence today at Grantham, following their excellent draw with league leaders Newmarket in midweek.

Town started the game in optimistic mood against a side stirred with promotion hopes. Mann had an effort well saved by the home keeper on eight minutes and Skipp hit another shot high over the bar.

On 11 minutes Grantham took the lead when OLIVER MANN had his shot parried by keeper Bilham and he was first to the rebound to put it into the net.

Browne almost immediately equalised but his well-struck shot was too high. On 20 minutes Town keeper Bilham had to be carried from the field of play due to a leg injury, to be temporarily replaced by captain Skipp in goal for 10 minutes.

Whilst Bilham was having treatment, Town continued with 10 men eventually putting substitute Atterton into goal, leaving Skipp to go back to his more familiar midfield position.

A Skipp free-kick eventually fell for Richards and his goalbound effort was blocked.

It was to be an eventful afternoon for Skipp as on 36 minutes he scored Thetford's equaliser. He picked the ball up wide on the right, beat two players and his eventual shot found the corner of the net.

Browne and Mann had further opportunities for Thetford but the half finished all square with Town having the better of the spoils.

Half-time: Grantham Athletic 1, Thetford Town 1

Bryant almost put Thetford in front in the first attack of the second half when his long run and shot went narrowly wide.

Against the run of play Brantham took the lead in the 52nd minute when Simon Mann cut in from the right and beat Atterton at his near post.

Atterton then made a good save with his feet after Brothers was clean through.

However it soon became 3-1 when a tackle by Money was deemed a foul inside the area and Oliver Mann despatched the resulting penalty.

Crawshaw had a headed opportunity to put Town back into the match but Brantham were now taking control and Lawler crept in following a defensive mix-up to make it 4-1 and then Simon Mann scored his second to make it five to the home team.

Thetford still created chances and Town's Simon Mann hit a post and Skipp had a volleyed effort well saved. Jiacomelli had a headed effort turned aside by the home keeper.

Brantham's Simon Mann completed his hat-trick on 87 minutes when he once again used his pace and was first on hand to the rebound from an Atterton save.

Thetford: Bilham, Jack Giacomelli, Brewer, Crawshaw, Money, Richards, Mann, Clayton, Browne, Skipp, Bryant, Suybs Burt, Atterton, Gregg Devlin, Senior.

Grantham Athletic: no line-up given.