Double eludes Beccles

Beccles Town 2, Kirkley & Pakefield Reserves 4

Beccles missed the chance of a league double, having won 3-1 away early in the season.

K&P needed points as they were falling close to the Anglian Combination Premier Division relegation places.

Beccles were unchanged from the side that beat Mattishall the week before. Kirkley had gone for experience with several ex-first team players.

Beccles kicked off and had a sluggish start.Kirkley bossed the game and in particular Danny Stokeld up front caused the Beccles defence some problems with his clever running off the ball.

From one such run he left the home defence trailing in his wake before side-footing past keeper Cable into the net for the game’s opener.

One soon became two just afterwards as Paul Highfield went down under a challenge. The referee pointed to the spot and Stokeld easily converted.

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The visitors were clearly buoyed by this, and having not tasted victory in some three months were in no mood to give up the initiative.

Beccles failed to muster a worthwhile effort in the whole of the first half and Kirkley went in at half-time with a comfortable 2-0 lead.

Beccles came out all guns blazing in the second half. Alan Remblance charged down a clearance from keeper Thacker but placed his first-time shot wide of the target.

It was all Beccles, but they failed to press home their advantage. Then Kirkley added a third.

Fine interplay between Stokeld and Highfield set Adam Bellis free in the penalty box, and his assured finish made it 3-0.

Beccles refused to lie down, and following a right-wing corner Ant Martin rose to head home the hosts’ opener.

Just a glimmer of doubt set in at the back for Kirkley, and Beccles looked to capitalise. Tom Roberts was pushed up front as Beccles looked to reduce the deficit.

Kirkley, however, responded and Paul Highfield made the score 4-1 to K&P.

Beccles introduced Ray Masters for Bensley, and with his first touch he guided the ball over the keeper and into the top of the net for 4-2.

Beccles tried hard to set up a grandstand finish, but to no avail, and Kirkley came away with a 4-2 victory which they richly deserved.

Beccles, in mid-table, will hope to bounce back tomorrow when they make the long trip to play at bottom side Brandon (kick-off 2.30pm).

Beccles Reserves have a very rare home league game, against East Harling, (kick-off 2.30pm).