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Paul nicks a hat-trick

PUBLISHED: 15:12 02 January 2008 | UPDATED: 09:50 08 July 2010

Watton United are hoping for a spirited performance against the Fakenham Reserves on Saturday.

The Ghosts are bottom of the table while Watton have been playing well.

Watton United are hoping for a spirited performance against the Fakenham Reserves on Saturday.

The Ghosts are bottom of the table while Watton have been playing well. Although they did lose out to high-placed Kirkley and Pakefield Reserves on Saturday, they achieved a great 4-0 home win over local rivals Attleborough the game before.

Another first-class performance from Watton and another clean sheet.

United began the game with a much-changed line-up following the injury to keeper Webster in the cup win at Beccles and three other absentees - so Watton were extremely grateful to Christian Heyward, who stepped-up from the A-team at the last minute.

United were quickly into their stride and managed to play some very nice football on what was a tricky surface.

But it was, in fact, a couple of moments of individual skill by man-of-the-match Paul Nichols which unlocked the home side's defence. Firstly, he picked up a ball on the left, drifted away from two defenders and cut across the top of the Town penalty area before unleashing a fierce 20-yard drive for 1-0.

Nichols got his second with a quite exceptional strike from inside the centre-circle.

An Attleborough defender inexplicably squared a free-kick straight to him and, having seen the Town keeper off his line, he fired home an audacious lob from 45 yards.

Nichols was unlucky not to secure his hat-trick just before the interval - somehow failing to connect with Campbell's low cross from the left which ran almost along the goal-line.

But just eight minutes into the second period, he did claim a deserved third.

Having broken clear down the middle from a nice through-ball, Nichols initially delayed but then drilled in clinically at the near post from 14 yards.

Several more chances came and went with Paul Woods, Applegate and Rudling all failing to find the net when well placed.

However, Watton did get a well-earned fourth on 74 minutes when top scorer Bloomfield netted his 13th of the season after his first effort was blocked.

Even then, Applegate had another good chance to add a fifth goal but United will be happy enough to have scored four and keep a second consecutive clean sheet.

Managers Derbyshire and Harwood were delighted with the team's attitude and approach to this local derby.

They were particularly pleased with the hunger shown by two of the players given their chance back in the starting 11 - Damion Rudling and Mark Woods.

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