Tough debut for young keeper as Kirkley & Pakefield are well beaten
PUBLISHED: 05:33 18 August 2017
Kirkley & Pakefield entertained Haverhill Rovers in a Thurlow Nunn Premier Division League match and were again well beaten.
The day started badly with neither of the first choice keepers available, so the Royals brought in 16-year-old youth team keeper Liam Bruce for his first team competitive debut.
Liam has been coached well though by his stepdad, former top local keeper Paul Gant. The only other change from the team defeated by Gorleston was Cain Eagleton returning in place of Cameron Brooks.
Haverhill opened the scoring out of the blue in the 15th minute with a spectacular strike from 35 yards by Luke Haines that gave the keeper no chance.
On 26 minutes Bruce made a good diving catch with the shot on target. Play was pretty unspectacular by both teams up to the interval.
Straight from the restart the home team attacked down the left side with Liam Harvey-Cooper cutting in only to shot straight at the keeper.
On 53 minutes Grint broke for the Royals and his shot from some 20 yards was deflected over the bar and a couple of minutes later Harvey-Cooper and Kyle Baker combined well and Harvey-Cooper’s shot was pushed round the post. Eagleton then saw his good shot from 20 yards skim the crossbar.
On the hour Haverhill broke and a shot across goal was put in by Ben Bradley. With the visitors’ tails now up they hit the post and it was only two minutes before substitute Rory Jess scored number three, which was only allowed by the referee after consulting his assistant who had his flag up for offside.
The Royals made a substitution on 70 minutes with Hammond replacing Tacon. The Royals attacked with a couple of close efforts pushed out by the keeper and then a Lopez free-kick was saved.
With five minutes remaining a late challenge in the area saw Haverhill awarded a penalty and susbstitute Jordan Palmer fired home.
Bruce then saved well while in the dying minutes Herbert had a header saved before Haylock’s centre was slid home by Baker for a consolation goal.
Kirkley & Pakefield: L Bruce, T Grint, K Haylock, M Lopez, J Herbert, L Flower, C Eagleton, J Haverson, M Tacon (Hammond 70), L Harvey-Cooper, K Baker.