Brantham Athletic 0
Hadleigh United 6
by Russell Claydon & Terry Adams
HADLEIGH manager Stuart Crawford declared this result his most pleasing in his fielding managerial career as the underdogs ran riot against a side who would have gone top with a win.
And with the Brettsiders travelling to league leaders Wroxham on Saturday (3pm), the Hadleigh boss believes his players have shown they are more than capable of competing with the best in the league.
“I do not think it was a fluke, the boys deserved it,” he said of their 6-0 win, which saw all the goals, including four from Ben Deacon, in the second half.
“We will definitely go to Wroxham with no fear but they are experienced and very well organised - they have only conceded 10 goals which is tremendous - and it will be a tough game. But if we do what we did at Brantham they will be in for a match.”
Brantham were the better side in the first half with ex-Brettsider Josh Mayhew hitting the post but once Ollie Canfer had scored Hadleigh’s opener after 55 minutes there was only one team in it.
Deacon netted a 15-minute hat-trick while at the other end Hadleigh keeper Daniel Heath saved a penalty from Ollie Mann. But the Brettsider’s were in rampant mood with Canfer and Deacon completing the scoring to round off a good three days for Hadleigh following Saturday’s win against Haverhill.
Crawford, who has made the bold decision to axe veterans Stuart Jopling and Michael Steward in favour of bringing in more energy into his side over the last few matches, added: “I personally think Brantham have a good shout for the league, they just caught us on a night when we were playing really well and everything we touched was flying into the net.”
Promising midfielder Luke Ingram was called back to parent club Bury Town as they had an injury crisis ahead of Tuesday’s FA Trophy extra-time defeat to Farnborough on Tuesday, but with the youngster on a dual registration with Hadleigh, he could still return later in the season.
Meanwhile, Crawford has revealed midfielder Luke Reed has decided to leave the club after struggling for form this campaign, which saw him take a break from the club before coming to his decision.
Defender Paul Donnelly is a doubt ahead of Saturday with a knee injury, while McGlone, with two goals in three games since signing on loan from Leiston, started on the bench on Tuesday having arrived at the ground late.