Fordham fightback is in vain

PUBLISHED: 09:41 08 March 2007 | UPDATED: 13:51 04 May 2010

UP FOR THE BATTLE: Sutton United, in red, produced an excellent first-half performance in Division 2B.
Photos: HELEN DRAKE

UP FOR THE BATTLE: Sutton United, in red, produced an excellent first-half performance in Division 2B. Photos: HELEN DRAKE

Saturday Football By Steve Green PREMIER DIVISION FORDHAM dropped three places to seventh as Waterbeach avenged an early-season 4-1 defeat by winning Saturday s return fixture. We left ourselves with a mountain to climb, said Fordham secretary John Pr

FEELING BLUE: The Vine lost their unbeaten record in Division 3B on Saturday. Head coach Dave Spencer, left, is pictured with manager Mick McCaffrey. The team has been sponsored by Russell Residential for two seasons.

Saturday Football

By Steve Green

PREMIER DIVISION

FORDHAM dropped three places to seventh as Waterbeach avenged an early-season 4-1 defeat by

winning Saturday's return fixture.

"We left ourselves with a mountain to climb," said Fordham secretary John Pryke after watching his side concede two goals in the opening five minutes, "but to our credit we did respond".

John Sands was credited with Fordham's opener when his swerving corner was helped into the net by the Waterbeach goalkeeper at the start of the second half, and he then found the bottom corner with a great 25-yard free-kick that made the score 2-2.

Jose Montero then had a great chance to put Fordham in front, but the goalkeeper managed to smother the ball and keep the hosts on level terms.

Fordham looked set for at least a point, but Waterbeach grabbed two goals in the last 10 minutes to steal the points.

Littleport Town meanwhile had yet another match called off, and manager Dave Cullum - whose team face a fixture pile-up - was not impressed.

"The first team pitch (at Histon) is OK to play on, but the 'A' team pitch 100 yards away is waterlogged. They must have their own mini-weather system there!"

SENIOR DIVISION B

SOHAM United moved up to ninth spot - their highest position of the season - after claiming their fourth win in seven matches at West Row Gunners.

Chris Lam fired in off the underside of the bar after playing a one-two with Jim Brown, and Ben Brown made it 2-0 by pouncing on the rebound after Jonathan Brown's shot was saved by the goalkeeper.

Ally Mohammed then broke through the West Row rearguard for United's third goal before the interval, and it looked plain sailing for the visitors.

"It could have been eight or nine," said Soham boss Andy Parker afterwards, "but having said that our 'keeper Carl Marlow played well. He made an important save when the score was 1-0."

The hosts fared better after the break, but young substitute Stuart Freeland made it 4-0 with his first Senior B goal, and completed Soham's second double of the season in the process.

Haddenham Rovers meanwhile lost for the third time in their last four away matches as they were beaten 2-0 away by championship-chasing Whittlesford United.

DIVISION 1B

LITTLEPORT Town Reserves kept themselves in the promotion hunt with a late winner from Nigel Smith at home to Godmanchester Rovers Reserves.

Smith had looked set to open the scoring in the first half, but after rounding the keeper and being felled by a challenge from behind, the referee waved away the penalty appeals.

Luke Hammett had equally valid claims for a spot-kick after being pole-axed by a defender in the second period, but again the referee decided that no foul had occurred.

A scrappy affair in heavy conditions looked destined to end goalless, but with a minute remaining Smith flicked the ball over a defender and launched a 20-yard volley into the top corner for the only goal of the game.

DIVISION 2B

SUTTON United produced an excellent first half performance to put the skids under lowly hosts Needingworth United Reserves.

Colin Coulson started a move in his own penalty area and finished it off after a strong challenge on the goalkeeper as he helped himself to a first-half double, and Matthew Keys was also on the scoresheet as Sutton led 3-0 at the break.

Needingworth upped their game in the second half, but United held firm and eventually grabbed a fourth goal through Sean Gimbert, whose powerful header from a corner gave the keeper no chance.

Seventh-placed Sutton - along with leaders Wisbech St Mary - have dropped the least number of points in this division, but with 14 of their 26 fixtures still to play they have it all to do at this stage.

DIVISION 3B

FORDHAM Reserves are unbeaten in five matches after Iain Butterworth, Grant Pearson and Lewis Cushing - with his first goal of the campaign - earned a 3-0 win against Hemingfords United A.

The Vine however, lost their unbeaten league record after suffering a 4-0 home defeat at the hands of fellow title contenders Somersham Town Reserves.

DIVISION 5B

ISLEHAM United Reserves again moved out of the bottom two - to be replaced by their opponents Coldham United - after winning Saturday's encounter 3-2.

The visitors led 2-0 inside the opening 15 minutes, but Nick Samuels pulled one back from the penalty spot after Thomas Sheldrick had been brought down.

Samuels then stabbed home during a goalmouth melee to level the scores, and a frantic finale saw Coldham have a player dismissed and Isleham score the winner.

Sam Richardson was driven wide after collecting a through-pass from Jamie Gould, but he struck the ball goalwards with his weaker foot and managed to clip it over the goalkeeper's head for the winner.

Burwell Swifts Reserves consolidated their position in the top half of the table following a 3-1 victory over Walsoken United, but they had to survive a few scares along the way.

Swifts started brightly and took the lead after just 10 minutes, Dave Fordham turning on the edge of the box to hit a sweet left foot drive into the top right-hand corner of the net.

The game looked over 10 minutes later, as Burwell were awarded a penalty kick and Walsoken's offending player received his marching orders.

John Irvine coolly converted from the spot to make it 2-0, and Swifts predictably dominated the remainder of the half, making enough chances to seal the game.

The visitors pulled a goal back with a penalty of their own on the stroke of half-time, and this gave them fresh impetus for the second period.

Burwell goalkeeper Richard Yates produced a man-of-the-match performance as Walsoken began to look dangerous on the break, but his team nevertheless established a 3-1 lead when Fordham turned in a Tom Thatcher cross from close range.

Thatcher then hit the bar before the visitors produced a late rally of their own.

Yates pushed a shot on to the bar, and another goalbound effort dragged in the mud before hitting the post, allowing Glenn Carmen time to clear the ball off the line.

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