Magpies set eyes on Norfolk Senior Cup

Dereham Town, now seven points clear in the race for the Ridgeons League championship, turn their attentions to the Norfolk Senior Cup on Saturday when they visit First Division promotion hopefuls Gorleston (3pm ko).

Magpies' manager Matt Henman emphasised how important the competition was to him. 'I have never had much luck, personally, in the Senior Cup. I have never got to the final either as a player or manager.'

At stake is a quarter-finals place, writes John Cushion.

Henman expressed pleasant surprise that Wroxham, in second place in the Ridgeons Premier, dropped points at home to bottom club Brantham in a 2-2 draw.

He thought Leiston, now 19 points behind but with eight games in hand, could be the main threat to the Magpies' title hopes.

He had no worries about the pressure. 'We have a relaxed dressing room and are very confident. We are going into every game thinking we can win.'

A bonus is that injured players are coming back, suspensions have been served and the new year sees several home games.

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At the weekend, only an in-form goalkeeper and the threat of fog stood in the way of a win at Newmarket, where goals in the second half gave the Magpies a 2-0 win.

'We had to work really hard, especially in the first half which was quite a battle against the slope,' said Henman.

'They tried to put us under pressure but we defended very well and looked the more likely to score.'

Craig Bussons caused the Jockeys problems with his pace, and Newmarket had a player sent off before half-time.

'We never looked like conceding, it was a case of whether we could break them down,' said Henman.

Bussons opened the scoring from a cross by Danny Beaumont.

The second came from Beaumont after good inter-play between him and Kyle Downes.