Row erupts between Needham Market and Witham Town after Ryman League North semi-final clash

Lee Townrow

Lee Townrow - Credit: Andy Abbott

Needham Market are furious over Witham Town’s decision to play Lee Townrow in the Essex side’s 1-0 Ryman League North semi-final victory on Tuesday, and could appeal the result.

Townrow is on-loan at Witham from Needham until May 5, but the Marketmen claim Witham broke a “gentleman’s agreement” by playing the versatile player in the crucial game.

However, Witham chairman Tony Last explained an agreement was only put in place for the league game and revealed his club had been given the green light by the Football Association and the Ryman League to field the former AFC Sudbury man in the play-off match.

Townrow didn’t feature in Witham’s defeat at Needham earlier this month, a contest that the hosts won, but played for the duration on Tuesday as Garry Kimble’s men progressed into Sunday’s final with Harlow Town.

Needham, who are paying a third of Townrow’s wages, had until yesterday lunchtime to recall the player ahead of Tuesday’s game – which Last classed as a “cup game” – but chose not to.


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The Marketmen’s official’s were meeting today to consider their next move.

See tomorrow’s EADT and Ipswich Star for more on this story.

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