AFC Sudbury go back to top of league

AFC Sudbury returned to the top of Ryman League Division One north thanks to a 3-2 win at Great Wakering last night, while Witham record their first victory of the season and Needham Market bowed out of the FA Cup following a 1-0 defeat at home to Grantham in their first qualifying round replay.

AFC Sudbury returned to the top of Ryman League Division One north thanks to a 3-2 win at Great Wakering last night, while Witham record their first victory of the season and Needham Market bowed out of the FA Cup following a 1-0 defeat at home to Grantham in their first qualifying round replay.

RYMAN LEAGUE DIVISION ONE NORTH

Witham 4 Wingate & Finchley 2

THIS was Witham's first win of the season, and they started this game well when Kevin Hawes rose and headed in a free kick. Adam Holmes then scored a hat-trick for the home side as they built up a convincing 4-0 lead at the interval.

However, after the break the visitors showed more determination and the Witham defence struggled as they were pushed back. The visitors did not score until the 89th minute when O'Brien netted and then Aisien scored another in injury time.

Great Wakering 2 AFC Sudbury 3

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AFC Sudbury went back to the top of the table with a closely-fought victory at Great Wakering. They took the lead as early as the 10th minute when a superb reverse pass by Hammond allowed Boardley to cross with Rowe scoring with a delicate glancing back header.

In the next minute only a brilliant one-handed save by Green kept out Boardley's stinging shot before first Wardley and then Head made last-ditch tackles to preserve the lead.

In the second half after Rowe had headed over from close range, Great Wakering equalised when a cross from Butterworth saw Richmond outjump Head to beat Munson.

Wakering then went ahead when the AFC defence was caught static and Clarke shot across Munson into the far corner of the net.

AFC Sudbury equalised through Boardley and then, five minutes from time, Rowe cleverly worked his way across the penalty area before beating Green with a fierce shot into the net for the winner.

Bury Town 5 Ware 1

AFTER early Bury pressure Ware broke and Chris Ellerbeck was on hand to slot past Dean Greygoose to give Ware the lead after five minutes and the keeper had to make two fine saves to deny the visitors a second.

Bury fought back and Gavin Johnson fired just over from the edge of the area while Danny Cornwell shot narrowly wide. On 42 minutes Bury got a deserved equaliser when Lee Reed got clear of the Ware defence and slipped the ball past Halsey.

The visitors applied pressure until, on a rare Bury break, Lee Smith got clear on the right and his low-cross was converted by Lee Reed.

After 60 minutes Danny Cornwell headed home Bury's third with the keeper out of position. Bury were now controlling the game and after good work by Lee Reed on the left Shaun Bammant headed home their fourth and in the final minute Steve Bugg completed the rout with a low-drive from the edge of the area.

FA VASE SECOND QUALIFYING ROUND REPLAY

Harwich 2 St Margaretsbury 2 - St Margaretsbury won 4-3 on pens

CALVER scored first for Harwich, but Herrod equalised before half-time. There were no more goals in the second half but Herrod put the visitors ahead in extra time. Calver equalised with a late penalty. St Margaretsbury won the penalty shoot-out 4-3.

FA CUP FIRST QUALIFYING ROUND

Needham Market 0 Grantham 1

NEEDHAM's FA Cup dream was ended by a solitary goal in last night's replay at Bloomfields.

The home team, who led 1-0 after 75 minutes when two bulbs on one of the floodlight pylons went out a week ago, were left to rue missed chances and sloppy defending for what proved to be the winner.

NEEDHAM created the most chances in a goal-less first half, although it was Grantham who went close in the seventh minute when Jason Minett shot wide when he should have scored.

A minute later it was Needham who missed a wonderful chance, when Jon Thorogood, with the goal at his mercy, headed wide from seven yards. Tommy Smith then saw his fine shot well saved by Ziccardi.

Needham continued to make and miss chances as Danny Thrower shot wide from eight yards.

Just before half time the first yellow card went to Tom Bryne for diving.

Grantham broke the deadlock in against the run of play in the 68th minute. Sloppy defending by Needham gave the ball away, and Brendan McDaid slipped the ball into the net. The visitors were then happy to defend, trying to catch Needham on the break. Needham continued to miss chances and two minutes from time Grantham's Sam Wilkinson shot over the bar from five yards with the goal at his mercy.

RIDGEONS LEAGUE PREMIER DIVISION

Ipswich Wanderers 4 Stanway Rovers 3

STANWAY took the lead in the sixth minute from Skeggs' corner, with Thorne wheeling away to claim the last touch. It was 2-0 on 14 minutes as Gaisford's free kick was miscued by Johnson and Turner gratefully accepted the gift.

After 32 minutes it was 3-0 after good interplay left Newson free to score. Brennan brought down Wright but the Wanderers forward blasted the kick wide of the goal.

Within five minutes of the second half Flurrie and Driver had pulled two goals back for Wanderers, with visiting keeper Thornton being stretchered off after colliding with team-mate Brennan.

On 55 minutes Rachel's precise through-ball set Wright away and substitute keeper North clattered him on the edge of the area to earn himself a red card. Callender took over the fateful gloves and Wanderers drew level on 77 minutes with Rachel putting Driver away to score. Two minutes from time Wanderers completed their comeback through Newman.

Mildenhall 2 Dereham 2

CRANFIELD opened the scoring in the second minute for Mildenhall, firing across Marshall into the far corner of the net. Harris got clear for Dereham but a certain goal was prevented by Nower's legs.

Marshall was beaten again when Taylor headed down and Cranfield fired home five minutes before the break. Dereham's Foley and Mildenhall's Inman were sent off 10 minutes after the break after a minor skirmish and it affected the home side more as Barrett headed home from a corner to reduce the arrears with 20 minutes to go.

Harris broke away to make it 2-2 in the last five minutes. Eady twice went close to winning the game for the home side in the final minute.

Haverhill Rovers 4 Walsham 0

HUNT opened the scoring from the penalty spot after 21 minutes after Heller was brought down by T Newman. The lead was doubled on the stroke of half-time, Abbott thumping his shot in off the far post. Heller netted himself after 69 minutes when he stole the ball from Gooderham and lofted it over Bugg, and Green completed the scoring five minutes later when he hit a controlled volley into the bottom right corner.

RIDGEONS LEAGUE FIRST DIVISION

Cornard Utd 1 Debenham LC 4

DEBENHAM limbered up for Saturday's FA Cup clash against AFC Wimbledon with a victory that took them to fifth in the table.

Gedny gave them the lead on the half-hour mark after Jopling's shot had been blocked by keeper Tanner. Cornard equalised when A Warren headed in Featherstone's cross but 10 minutes from time Jopling headed home Gedny's cross to put Debenham back in front.

Substitute Canfer made it three and Cornard keeper Tanner was dismissed for comments made to the officials. Pratt gave the scoreline a flattering look as his shot went straight through replacement keeper Russell for Debenham's fourth.

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