Five defeats on the bounce for Needham after loss at Diamonds

Jamie Griffiths scored a belter for Needham - but they still lost their fifth game in a row. Photo:

Jamie Griffiths scored a belter for Needham - but they still lost their fifth game in a row. Photo: BEN POOLEY - Credit: Archant

Evo-Stik Southern Premier AFC Rushden & Diamonds 2 Needham Market 1 A blustery Hayden Road saw the Marketmen fall to their fifth successive defeat, writes Paul Munn.

Despite taking the lead in the 20th minute through a superb 25-yard free kick from Jamie Griffiths, Rushden levelled it up two minutes later through Declan Rogers and a Jack Bowen header gave them the lead three minutes before the break.

The Marketmen tried throughout the remainder of the game but were unable to find a way back onto the scoresheet.

The elements more than played their part as a gale-force wind swept across the ground throughout the game, making it extremely tricky conditions for both sides.

The home side had the wind at their backs in the first half and were looking capitalise on that early on.

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However, with 20 minutes played the Marketmen were awarded a free kick 25 yards out after Joseph Marsden was bundled over. Up stepped Jamie Griffiths to strike it superbly beyond the reach of keeper Ben Heath and into the top corner.

Rushden’s response was swift. Two minutes later a Sam Brown long throw from the left was flicked on by Alex Collard, it ran for Declan Rogers who lashed home a right-footed effort past Jake Jessup.

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The Marketmen’s keeper was also in action soon after when he saved a Ben Farrell effort. His counterpart at the other end was then called into action, denying Joseph Marsden.

It was the home side who looked the more threatening before taking the lead three minutes before the break. A long free kick from the back was sent deep into the Marketmen’s half where the unfortunate Jeremiah Kamanzi, in the act of trying to clear it, inadvertently flicked it across his own area.

Rushden’s Jack Bowen seized on the opportunity and looped a header over the keeper.

While Needham had the majority of the possession in the second half and did most of the attacking, they couldn’t find an equaliser – worrying times for the club and its fans.

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