Mattishall bounce back
Kirkley 1, Mattishall 4Mattishall, following only their second league defeat of the season, got the response they needed at Anglian Combination Division One high-flyers Kirkley Reserves at Walmer Road.
Kirkley 1, Mattishall 4
Mattishall, following only their second league defeat of the season, got the response they needed at Anglian Combination Division One high-flyers Kirkley Reserves at Walmer Road.
This was an excellent performance and one that Mattishall, now fifth seven points off the leaders with three games in hand, will need to repeat in the coming weeks as they reach the business end of the season.
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Mattishall made two changes with Ben Lewis replacing the unavailable Chris Hall and Luke Winter leading the line in place of an injured Alex Fitzgerald.
Skipper Hewitt won the toss and decided to kick into the fresh breeze blowing straight down the pitch. Mattishall started brightly and their first chance fell to Starling when his free-kick from the edge of the area grazed the outside of the post with keeper Shannon flat-footed.
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Mattishall were dealt an early blow when the injured Wooden was replaced by Ben King, who slotted in at left back with Starling playing alongside Rob Connelley in the centre. Minutes after the change the home side took the lead when a deep cross from Twonlow evaded Baldry and was headed home by Bellis.
Mattishall responded within minutes when a sweeping ball from Hewitt found Craig Clarke, who cut inside before placing his shot inside the right-hand post.
K&P then enjoyed a fair amount of possession but the visitors' back four defended stoutly and there were no real clear-cut chances apart from when Highfield got in front of his marker but headed just over.
Mattishall continued to scrap for every ball and at the end of the first half were the better-placed side.
The second half saw Mattishall, with the wind at their backs, take a firm grip. K&P were having problems clearing their lines. Mattishall used both flanks with the speedy Lewis on the right seeing plenty off the ball and Winter leading the line well. They were now dominating the game.
K&P tried to play a high line with the back four, and having nearly beaten the offside trap several times. Mattishall finally sprung it when Winter burst through and lobbed the advancing keeper.
Minutes later a misplaced pass was seized upon by Winter who was impeded by Manning who was cautioned, the referee awarding Mattishall a spot kick which Starling slammed into the back of the net.
K&P began to lose their composure as they attempted to haul themselves back into the game, but Mattishall were dominating all over the pitch and following the introduction of Harbour, who replaced Clarke. The substitute, who had only been on the field for five minutes, found himself in space and coolly lobbed the keeper for Mattishall's fourth.
On Saturday, Mattishall are at fourth-placed Corton.