Beccles Town 0 North Walsham Town 3
- Credit: Archant
This was a fixture between two of the early season favourites for promotion from the Anglian Combination Division One, but Beccles produced a flat performance which did not match their early season form and were convincingly beaten.
Beccles welcomed back Roberts, Wright and Holmes back into the squad, in addition to recently signed goalkeeper Daniel Cable, who returned to the club following spells at Great Yarmouth and Diss. Town lined up with Cable, Roberts, Shade, Batt, Heaney, Booker, Hurren, Udell, Clark, Remblance and Fulcher, with Avery, Holmes and Wright on the bench.
On 20 minutes Beccles almost opened the scoring when the ball found Heaney and his first-time drive crashed back off the bar.
Soon after, Beccles thought they had scored after they had the ball in the back of the net. From a floated ball in the box, Remblance jumped higher than the keeper and the ball fell kindly to Booker to tap home. However, after initially signalling a goal, the referee awarded a free-kick for a foul on the keeper.
Beccles came out in the second half and started brightly, with Clark and Remblance fashioning attempts at goal, and on 50 minutes good combination play by Fulcher and Heaney saw the latter bearing down on goal six yards out. As the midfielder was about to pull the trigger, a defender clipped his ankle which sent him crashing to the ground, but the referee waved play on.
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North Walsham were always dangerous on the counter-attack and on 65 minutes took the lead. A winger fashioned a cross from the left and the opposite winger ghosted in at the back post to finish past Cable. Beccles then made a change of personnel and formation with Wright and Holmes replacing Fulcher and Hurren. Town continued to try and create that opportunity to draw level, but didn’t seem to threaten the North Walsham goal as their defence and midfield stood resolute.
The visitor’s fine defensive display provided the catalyst for them to catch Beccles on the counter on 75 minutes and extend their lead further. From a Beccles corner, the visitors produced a sweeping move which ended with a striker heading past Cable at the back post.
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Roberts then twice found himself in the box unchallenged but both his efforts flew over the bar. This signalled it was not to be Beccles’ day, and as they pushed numbers forward to try to get back into the game, North Walsham completed the scoring as, from a clearance, an unmarked striker advanced on goal and finished past Cable.
Beccles have a local derby to look forward to tomorrow, with Loddon the visitors.