‘You don’t see saves like that in non-league’ – Morsley on Walker’s stunning save

AFC Sudbury keeper Paul Walker keeps out a strike from Great Wakering's Jacob Wiggins, during a leag

AFC Sudbury keeper Paul Walker keeps out a strike from Great Wakering's Jacob Wiggins, during a league match last February. Picture: PAUL VOLLER - Credit: Archant

Paul Walker made one of the most stunning saves I have seen, in non-league football, when he somehow managed to palm away Reece Harris’ 74th minute thunderbolt during AFC Sudbury’s 2-1 defeat at Kingstonian on Saturday.

His manager, Mark Morsley, declared that save to be "on a different plane" to anything else he had seen, during his managerial career.

But for Walker himself, who made three key saves to come close to earning AFC Sudbury an FA Trophy replay, it was just another day in the office.

"It's my job to make a few saves," said a modest Walker.

"I have to keep the ball out of the net, no matter how I do it.

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"The ball came through a couple of bodies, and I just managed to get a hand on it, pushing it around the post.

"We weathered the storm at the start, because it was a one-sided game early on with the boys putting their bodies on the line, but we stuck in there.

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"It wasn't so backs-to-the-wall in the second half. We got the early goal (Callum Harrison), after which we dropped deeper.

"It was disappointing and a bit unlucky to concede that late goal. It was flicked on at the near post, someone headed it against the bar and then there as a bit of pinball.

"But we've got a young team, apart from Sean (Marks) at 33, Adam (Bailey-Dennis) at 29 and me at 27.

"It's our first defeat since Danny (Laws) and Dave (Cannon) took over full-time (first-team), and we now have to concentrate on climbing up that league," added Walker, who has another year-and-a-half left on his contract.

Manager Morsley, by contrast, did not hold back when describing his keeper's display at King George's Field.

"Paul Walker produced another of the great non-league goalkeeping performances, without a shadow of doubt," insisted Morsley.

"The save he made in the second half - you don't see saves like that in non-league football. People talk about the Gordon Banks save (from Pele in Mexico, 1970), but that was up there with it.

"The ball was going to go in, right in the middle of the goal. It was only three or four inches off the deck but he has managed to get his hand to it and get it around the post. You just don't see saves like that in non-league.

"Paul's the best keeper I have had. Nathan (Munson) was always the best, but for me Paul is on a different plane. He's the complete goalkeeper," added Morsley.

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