Shock exit was a blessing in disguise

CHRISTIAN Appleford now looks back on his shock summer exit from Woodbridge Town as a blessing in disguise.He kept the Woodpeckers in the Premier Division of the Ridgeons League at the end of last term and led them to success in the Churchman Cup.

Elvin King

CHRISTIAN Appleford now looks back on his shock summer exit from Woodbridge Town as a blessing in disguise.

He kept the Woodpeckers in the Premier Division of the Ridgeons League at the end of last term and led them to success in the Churchman Cup.

Appleford is now joint manager of Stowmarket Town with John Griffin, and they will be seeking their third consecutive victory when they entertain Swaffham in a First Division fixture at Greens Meadow tomorrow.


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“It was a difficult environment to work in at Woodbridge and there were a number of underlying issues,” he said.

“With players being transferred without my knowledge it was hard to keep track, although my managerial CV is better for my time there.

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“I had five good offers in the summer from the Premier Division of the Ridgeons League down to the SIL, and did not want to jump straight back into another job.

“But when John rang up out of the blue I met the chairman and club officials at Stowmarket and they showed that they wanted me.

“And they have shown that they are prepared to back me and John.

“The atmosphere at Stowmarket has changed in the last couple of weeks with a renewed confidence after early season results did not live up to pre-season hype.

“We are looking to promotion and looking to match the club's off-field ambitions with the right results on the field.”

Alan Johnson began the season in charge at Stowmarket but resigned within a couple of games leaving Griffin to pick up the pieces.

Neil Sharpe is now chairman with a structure in place to gain a longer lease and considerably improve facilities at Greens Meadow.

Christian Johnson and David Anderson have successfully moved up to the first team in recent games and should feature tomorrow with Appleford hoping that Daniel Tredray is available. Ryan Clark is serving a suspension.

Also in the First Division, third-place Brantham Athletic will be out to keep their good start going against the youngsters from Team Bury, while Steve Buckle's Ipswich Wanderers face a stiff task at Great Yarmouth.

Debenham Leisure Centre have taken to the Premier Division like a duck to water and Mel Aldis' side will be fancied to beat Newmarket at home, and Paul Smith's Walsham-le-Willows can continue their domination over big name clubs with three points at Wivenhoe Town.

Leiston remain a decent bet for the league title and they visit CRC, and Hadleigh, who can feel happy with their start to life under new manager Peter Grant, meet Haverhill in a Suffolk derby.

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