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Five-goal Bethell helps Brandon Town beat the drop

18:10 01 May 2012

Brandon Town 6 Holt Utd 4

IAN BETHELL scored five goals as Brandon Town came from 2-0, 3-1 and 4-3 down to secure their place in senior football for another season in a stunning finale to the Anglian Combination season.

After the previous week’s 7-0 home defeat to Watton, Brandon knew they had to win to be sure of keeping their place in the Division One.

Managers Nocton and Farthing were blessed with a full squad to select from, Leech and Bland’s cricketing duties having been cancelled due to the weather while Winstone returned after suspension and Sobiechowski was back after injury.

Holt, who knew a point would be enough to save them from the drop, took the lead when a through ball found the Brandon back line all at sea. When a carbon copy goal made it 2-0 it looked as though Holt would go on and win at a canter. But, against the run of play, Sobiechowski rifled in a half volley to make it 2-1 and Brandon finally settled down to play some good football.

Their Achilles heel was exposed again by another needless goal. But then the Ian Bethell show began.

The live wire forward bagged two quick goals before the break to drag Brandon level.

Brandon knew the next 45 minutes were crucial in saving the club from dropping into division two for the first time in over 20 years.

But the game took another twist when they were caught out by a ball over the top to put Holt 4-3 up.

Bethell, however, again pulled Brandon level, completing his hat-trick by beautifully lobbing the on-rushing keeper. He grabbed his fourth of the day to put Brandon in front for the first time with 15 minutes to play. Holt then threw everything at Town but, this time, the Brandon back line stood firm, helped by a brilliant save from Corston to deny them an equaliser before Bethell wrapped up the points with his fifth and Brandon’s sixth goal.

With survival secured, Brandon have a cup semi- final tonight at Mildenhall (7.45pm), still hoping to pick up their first trophy since 2008.

Brandon Town FC’s annual 5-a-side tournament is on Saturday, June 9. All teams welcome at £25 per team. Contact 01842813177 or 01760721341 for details

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