Walsham making all the right moves

PAUL Smith's Walsham-le-Willows are now making all the right moves after a poor start to the season.Four league wins and a draw in their last six league games have moved the Summer Road club up to sixth in the Ridgeons League Premier Division table.

Mike Bacon

PAUL Smith's Walsham-le-Willows are now making all the right moves after a poor start to the season.

Four league wins and a draw in their last six league games have moved the Summer Road club up to sixth in the Ridgeons League Premier Division table.

Tomorrow they entertain Richard Carter's high-flying Wivenhoe Town side, and Smith knows his team's improvement is, in part, down to former Sudbury Town team-mate - Marty Thorpe.


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Thorpe, who was previously assistant to Mick Stockwell at Woodbridge Town, has joined the coaching staff at Walsham, and his style of training is paying dividends.

“Marty's coaching has seen us get the ball down more and play it about,” Smith said.

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“It has definitely helped. We played Felixstowe & Walton recently and played them off the park and even many of them admitted that.

“We needed something different and Marty has helped us with that.”

After no wins in their first four league outings, Walsham won their next four, although defeat at King's Lynn Reserves last weekend stopped their good run.

“It was a disappointing result against Lynn, because we played a stronger Histon Reserves side the week previous and got a point,” Smith added.

James Tatham, the former Bury striker, has been in good form for Walsham, while Wivenhoe will want to arrest a slide of two defeats at Woodbridge and at home to Mildenhall.

Woodbridge Town are likely to enjoy their biggest crowd of the season at home to Wisbech, not because of the attraction of the Fen Men, but because it is the club's youth section day. Last season the day was swelled by more than 200 youngsters at Notcutts.

And with it being international week and no Ipswich Town in action, there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy taking in a non-league game this weekend in east Suffolk - Needham Market, Felixstowe & Walton, Whitton and Brantham are all at home tomorrow.

In the Suffolk and Ipswich League, leaders Grundisburgh travel to Felixstowe United, while second-placed Melton St Audrys are at lowly Stonham Aspal.

There have been good starts to the season by both Capel Plough and Crane Sports, and while Capel are in league action at Westerfield, Crane are in Suffolk Senior Cup action.

There are four ties in the first round of this competition, which ends up with a final at Portman Road and, as usual, there are plenty of interesting clashes as Ridgeons League sides entertain teams from lower down the pyramid.

Stowupland will fancy their chances at a Cornard side who blow hot and cold, while Hadleigh were mighty impressive at Halstead midweek and are likely to be too strong for Crane.

Debenham and Ipswich Athletic could have a close encounter at Bourne Vale, while Long Melford entertain Beccles.

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