Swaffham Town prepare for title showdown at Saffron Walden
- Credit: Eddie Deane
Swaffham Town face a title showdown at Saffron Walden on Saturday.
The Pedlars, third, visit the Thurlow Nunn First Division leading Bloods in a pivotal fixture as the race to grab one of the three promotion slots continues to hot up.
Paul Hunt's troops – who last night were set to visit Team Bury – did themselves no harm at the weekend by winning 2-0 at Halstead Town while two of their main rivals, Great Yarmouth Town and Long Melford, both dropped points by playing out a 1-1 draw on the coast.
Halstead's Rosemary Lane is always a difficult venue, the pitch was extremely heavy and the midweek rain had turned patches on the pitch into boggy areas and nearly unplayable. But Swaffham started strongly with an early opportunity for Joe Jackson, played through by Jack Redhead, just missing the target.
Jackson was instrumental in the first goal. His probing run to the touchline and squaring for Mark Allibone allowed him to bring the ball under control, and beat the keeper's dive with 32 minutes gone.
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One goal never looked as though it was going to be sufficient to claim the points. And any growing pressure was relieved a third of the way through the second half.
Alex Vincent, with a driving run to the edge of the box, shot across goal and the ball netted in the top-left hand corner. Keeper Joshua Barnes added to Halstead's misery in the closing minutes, pulling off a fine save to his left side to deny them a consolation goal.
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Great fightback from reserves
Swaffham Town Reserves returned to winning ways in Division Three of the Almary Green Anglian Combination – despite being 2-0 down at half-time.
The Pedlars' second string came back to beat Freethorpe 3-2 with goals from Ben Harris, Finlay Bloodworth and Aaron Marsh. On Saturday they entertain Blofield United Reserves at Shoemakers Lane.
The under-18s also enjoyed a great week by putting in a fine derby performance to beat Downham Town by three goals to one.
Bloodworth and Nick Castellan (2) netted for the young Pedlars. This Thursday they are at home to Soham Town Rangers (kick-off 7.45pm).
The club's veterans host Scole in cup action on Sunday (2pm).