RIDGEONS LEAGUE DIVISION 1 Ely City 3 Tiptree United 0 THE Robins got off to a perfect start to the season on Saturday with three goals, three points, and a clean sheet, against a team that many have tipped for first division title. Ely manager Dennis Li
RIDGEONS LEAGUE DIVISION 1
Ely City 3 Tiptree United 0
THE Robins got off to a perfect start to the season on Saturday with three goals, three points, and a clean sheet, against a team that many have tipped for first division title.
Ely manager Dennis Lightning handed out four league debuts and centre-back Brady Stone, midfielder Dave Smith, striker Nick Impey, and left-back Jamie Thurlbourne, all settled in quickly and played key roles in this superb victory.
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Kick-off was delayed by the referee's late arrival, but the Ely players adapted well, closed the opposition down quickly, and attacked with zest.
The home side thought they had taken the lead just 10 minutes into the season when Richard Dewsbury found the net with a clever flick, but the goal was ruled out as the ball had gone out of play before the cross came in.
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Ely continued with a relentless assault on the Tiptree goal.
Robbie Mason hit the cross-bar, before Impey forced a good save, and then captain Andy Chatters gave them the lead after 25 minutes. Chatters hit a sweet low strike that deflected off a defender, before hitting the back of the net.
The Robins kept the pressure on and were unfortunate not to double their lead before half-time, with the all-action Mason forcing a full-stretch diving save from the Tiptree keeper.
Ely did find a second goal just three minutes into the second half, when Chatters curled in a corner which was met by the head of Dean Blackman. This sparked the visitors into life and the Ely defence coped well with a 10-minute period of pressure.
Tiptree thought they had pulled one back at around the hour mark but their goal was disallowed for offside. Just a few minutes later Ely keeper, Tim Catley, tipped a shot over the bar to ensure the home side retained their two-goal lead.
Ely defended well as a unit and calmly played their way back into the game.
Dave Smith smashed an effort marginally wide, before Mason turned his man and added a third, with 10 minutes remaining, to finish the game off.
Lightning said: "I couldn't have asked for any more, we were fantastic. All the new lads performed excellently and we were superb through out the whole team, I
couldn't pick a man-of-the-match.
Lightning added: "If we continue to play like we did here, then promotion has to be on the cards, but it's important not to get carried away and take each game as it comes."
Ely's next match is against Langford, away, in the FA Cup. The match will be played at Biggleswade United's ground. Kick-off 3pm.