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Kirkley & Pakefield sunk by former Lowestoft striker Francis

PUBLISHED: 07:20 01 September 2017

Action from Saturday's game between Kirkley & Pakefield and Haverhill Borough at Walmer Road. Picture: Bryan Grint

Action from Saturday's game between Kirkley & Pakefield and Haverhill Borough at Walmer Road. Picture: Bryan Grint

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Unbeaten second-placed Felixstowe & Walton provided the opposition for Kirkley & Pakefield on Tuesday evening.

The visitors turned in a solid performance on the road against a good team before suffering a second successive defeat in the Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division, with two goals from former Lowestoft Town player Joe Francis settling the issue.

The Royals had Elliot Whiteside, another long term injury casualty, out but Lewis Flower was back in an otherwise unchanged team.

The home team went into a 10th minute lead when Francis cut in from the right and let fly with an unstoppable shot from an acute angle.

A Williams free-kick was headed just wide by Jack Herbert for the Royals and on 24 minutes the equaliser came after good work by Dylan Blades down the left saw him cut in and centre for Jordan Haverson to slot home.

Just three minutes later Blades was through again, beating the keeper but just having his shot cleared off the line. The Seasiders got a good moving going before missing twice with Herbert finally clearing and then Lopez tried unsuccessfully to lob the keeper for the away team.

On 33 minutes that man Francis was at it again, firing in goal number two with a great shot from the edge of the area.

The home team had a few more attempts cleared by Herbert and his defenders or well saved by keeper Rogers. Haverson shot wide but on the stroke of half-time a Williams free-kick was well met with a Lopez header that was brilliantly saved by the home keeper.

The second half saw the rampant Seasiders being held at bay by some wonderful goalkeeping by Hayden Rogers in the Royals’ goal. Although one attempt did strike the post, the away team had to wait until the 71st minute before their first shot of the half at goal by Haverson.

Then a well-worked move involving Williams, Haverson and Lopez saw the latter’s header well saved.

With the home team attacking at every opportunity the Royals held firm in another workmanlike away performance despite finally losing out 2-1 to a very good Felixstowe team.

Kirkley & Pakefield: Rogers, Grint, Haylock, Hammond, Herbert, Flower, Williams (Brooks 75), Eagleton (Tacon 80), Blades, Lopez, Haverson. Unused sub: Wilson.

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