Suffolk FA left red-faced over Jack’s yellow cards

JACK Wilkinson missed out on possibly playing for Needham Market in the FA Trophy after a case of mistaken identity.

The left-sided player, who is on a season-long loan at Haverhill Rovers, was recently recalled by Needham after impressing for the Ridgeons League Premier Division side.

The 19-year-old played the next four matches for Needham at left back, which also saw him score his first goal for Needham.

However, manager Danny Laws decided to leave Wilkinson out of the side to face Redbridge in the FA Trophy last Saturday believing he was facing a one-match ban for picking up five bookings and would not be eligible for Tuesday evening’s Ryman League Division One North fixture at home to the same opponents.

The player himself, who knew he had only been cautioned three times this season, instead turned out for Haverhill in Saturday’s 1-0 FA Vase defeat at Felixstowe & Walton United.

Jairo Marin, Football Services Manager at Suffolk FA, said Wilkinson had indeed only been booked three times so far this season, and that the other two bookings were in fact picked up by another player of the same name.

He said: “It is unfortunate this situation has occurred, and we need to make sure cautions are dealt with diligently to avoid it happening again.”

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Andy Gould, director of football at Needham Market, said: “It is unfortunate for both Jack and the football club.

“He was brought back from his spell at Haverhill and was selected for four consecutive matches, all of which we won, and had it not been for us being under the impression that he was not going to be available for selection he would undoubtedly have been considered for last Saturday’s match.”

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