Forder hits Bradenham hat-trick
Bradenham Wanderers 5, CNSOBU 1Bradenham hosted their first Dolphin Auto's Anglian Combination Division Four game for a month. After a two-week lay off, there were concerns in the home camp that they might not be able to keep the momentum going after a successful December and good start to the new year at Wells.
Bradenham Wanderers 5, CNSOBU 1
Bradenham hosted their first Dolphin Auto's Anglian Combination Division Four game for a month. After a two-week lay off, there were concerns in the home camp that they might not be able to keep the momentum going after a successful December and good start to the new year at Wells.
They responded well, and it is disappointing that the fixture list has thrown up another blank Saturday this week, so the next first team fixture is Norwich Union Reserves at home on February 9. Bradenham lead their division by one point from North Walsham Reserves, who have a game in hand.
Forced into changes with Eves, Smart, Taafe and Dickinson missing, there was a return for Cox, Allison and Sexton. The versatile Jamie Craig dropped into centre half allowing Steve Cox to fill the right side berth. John Allison returned up front, leaving Karl Sexton on the bench.
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Bradenham chose to defend the slope first half with the wind in their faces, a good decision, it transpired, from captain Forder who went on to complete a hat-trick.
The game kicked of in typical fashion for two teams that haven't played for a while, with the wrong choice of pass going astray early on. Bradenham were forced into an early change with linesman Julian Forder pulling a muscle to be replaced by Dave Galer.
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On the pitch Wanderers were starting to get their game together. They were comfortably holding Old Boys at bay and attacking at every opportunity. A couple of chances fell to the home forwards, but good goalkeeping kept the score 0-0 going into half-time.
The half-time instructions were to keep playing the football and to keep patient as chances would come. What wasn't allowed for, was slack marking from a free-kick, allowing a CNSOBU forward to head home on 48 minutes.
This brought Bradenham to life and within five minutes Forder hit home a quick reply. The Bulldogs then had the bit between their teeth and there only looked one winner.
Bradenham were awarded a free-kick just inside the visitors' half and from Tufts' strong kick, Marc Galer rose on the edge of the box. As the ball nestled into the back of the net, nobody was sure whether he got a touch, but after his celebration nobody had the heart to take it away from him.
Soon after another move ended with a shot being blocked, but the ball spun skywards and Dean Garrod was the first to react, bravely heading in at the far post. It was no more than the two hard-working centre midfield players deserved than a goal each.
Waves of attacks came with John Allison hitting a shot just over and a tremendous header from a Cox cross narrowly falling the wrong side of the upright, denying him a goal his performance deserved.
Rick Forder then got in on the act, beating the offside trap and lobbing the keeper for his second and the team's fourth. He completed his hat-trick, his goal resulting from the best move of the game.
The ball found it way out to Cox on the right and his run took him past three defenders and into the box. As he shaped to shoot he flicked the ball to his right for the on rushing Forder, whose shot flew into the net after taking a slight deflection.
The man of the match award could have gone again to a number of players, Forder for his hat-trick, Craig for his performance in a new position, Rob Thurley or Kyle Goodge for solid performances, but was deservedly picked up by Steve Cox for his all-round top display.
Praise was also given to the referee David Thornhill who was by far the best ref this season, talking to the players and explaining decisions.