K&P Royals prepare for another top five battle
- Credit: Archant
Kirkley and Pakefield FC are now third in the Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division after two gallant displays in the past week.
A 3-3 draw with Stanway Rovers last Saturday at Walmer Road was followed by a midweek defeat in the top of the table clash with Wroxham.
Kirkley & Pakefield 3, Stanway Rovers 3
K&P had an early return match with Stanway Rovers after winning 3-2 away just two weeks ago.
The Royals welcomed back player/manager Jack Herbert to the centre of defence with Kieren Underdown moving into midfield in place of the injured Jordan Haverson.
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The home team attacked briskly in the first 15 minutes but had nothing to show on the scoresheet.
On 20 minutes Stanway opened the scoring through Jake Phillips, who beat the defence to slot past keeper Smith from close range.
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Just five minutes later the same player outjumped Herbert to head in the second.
On 28 minutes Royals full back Alex Meeken had to be carried from the field with a nasty looking hamstring injury to be replaced by young Anthony Cox.
The home side were struggling to get back in the game and the nearest they came before half time was a Goldspink free kick which went over the bar.
In the 58th minute Kaiden Goldspink was brought down in the area and Cameron Russell superbly fired home the resultant penalty.
Just two minutes later the visitors made it a two goal lead once more when centre forward Danny Gilchrist netted with a superb strike.
Goldspink hobbled off to be replaced by Keiron Baldwin on 75 minutes.
In the 82nd minute Lewis Flower was brought down for the Royals second penalty of the afternoon which Russell once again despatched well to reduce the arrears.
Kyle Haylock’s fine run in the 88th minute ended with an excellent cross for Russell to head powerfully home for his hat trick as the Royals equalised.
In the last move of the game Haylock again delivered a fine centre for Russell to lay in sub Cox who shot sweetly from 20 yards only to see the ball shave the post.
A hard point saw the Royals maintain top spot after a thrilling second half.
K&P: J Smith, C Bell, A Meeken (A Cox), B George, J Herbert, L Flower, K Haylock, K Underdown, D Conroy, C Russell, K Goldspink (K Baldwin). Subs unused: L Tillett, O Limburn, E Reynolds.
Wroxham 3, Kirkley & Pakefield 0
K&P travelled to Wroxham for a first versus second top of the table encounter on Tuesday evening.
A very much weakened Royals team, without keeper Jordan Smith, Alex Meeken and Kaiden Goldspink who were all injured and with Lewis Flower suspended, it meant Elliot Reynolds was in goal, with Jordan Haverson returning after injury, as Anthony Cox and young Louis Tillett – for his first start – were included.
In the very first minute ex Norwich player Grant Holt hit the post.
On five minutes Cox’s well struck free kick was well saved by keeper Sutton. Reynolds pulled off a string of good saves before Wroxham scored in the 34th minute after a left wing shot by Ryan Miles was lifted over the keepers head by Ish Fatadjo.
Both teams had early second half chances when in the 52nd minute the ball was adjudged to have hit Bell’s arm and Grant Holt easily converted from the spot.
A good run by Miles saw him beat the advancing keeper to centre for Bradley Spooner to knock in the third for the home side on 69 minutes.
From the restart Haylock shot well from the edge of the area with home keeper Sutton producing a good save. Ben George also went close near the end.
A convincing win for the home team to take them to the top of the table after a gallant display by the Royals, who dropped to third.
K&P: E Reynolds, C Bell (J Coleman), A Cox, B George, J Herbert, K Underdown, K Haylock, J Haverson (O Limburn), D Conroy, C Russell, L Tillett (I Dawson). Subs unused: K Goldspink, J Smith.
This Saturday sees a third versus fifth battle as K&P entertain FC Clacton at Walmer Road, 3pm kick off.
Next Wednesday, October 7, K&P are on another away trip to play Long Melford in the Suffolk County FA Premier Cup second round, 7.45pm kick off.
In the Suffolk County Senior Cup the Reserves have a home match against Bungay Town at Walmer Road on Wednesday, October 28, 7.30pm kick off.
Last Wednesday evening the Reserves were defeated 4-1 at home to Gorleston Reserves with a Jack Herbert header scoring for the Reserves.
This Saturday the Reserves are away at Yelverton, 2.30pm kick off.
Next Thursday evening, October 8, sees a local derby in the U18 Youth League as Waveney U18s travel across the bridge to Walmer Road to play K&P U18s, 7.45pm kick off.
Last Saturday K&PFC U23s saw their away match against Mutford & Wrentham Reserves in the Lowestoft & District League Division 1, sponsored by Team Lauren Lou Fundraising, called off. But in the same division the ‘B’ team lost 2-1 at home against Beccles Caxton Reserves.
On Saturday the U23s are at home to Spexhall Huntsman & Hound with the ’B’ team playing away against Hawthorn United at Ormiston Denes Academy, both 2pm kick offs.
A reminder to all who attend – both players and spectators – the Kirkley & Pakefield FC Walmer Road football grounds and 3G Arena and the clubhouse which is still at present open.
All must sign the COVID-19 book on entry to any of these facilities, strictly keeping social distancing and a suitable face mask must be worn at all times in the club, where all persons must be seated for table service, in tables of no more than six as provided.