Long Melford must adapt following Whitton defeat

GOAL CELEBRATION: Halstead Town celebrate finding the target during Saturdays 3-0 home win against Downham Town at Rosemary Lane. Goals from Ross Elkins, Jake Brown and Sam Cripps secured victory for the Humbugs.
GOAL CELEBRATION: Halstead Town celebrate finding the target during Saturdays 3-0 home win against Downham Town at Rosemary Lane. Goals from Ross Elkins, Jake Brown and Sam Cripps secured victory for the Humbugs.
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THURLOW NUNN LEAGUE

PREMIER DIVISION

Whitton United 2

Long Melford 0

Jules Mumford has admitted that he and his Long Melford side need to adapt to the playing conditions at this time of year.

On an uneven and patchy playing surface at the King George V Playing Field last Saturday, Mumford's men were defeated 2-0 by hosting Whitton United, who had lost their previous 13 games in all competitions.

It was a result that followed a 1-0 loss at home to Brantham Athletic, which brought an end to Melford’s seven-match unbeaten streak in the league.

With his side now in danger of embarking on a losing sequence, Mumford conceded that a slight change in playing style is in order.

"We should have been 5-1 up at half-time, but it didn't happen. Then Whitton made it 2-0 soon after and we couldn't get back into it," said the Melford boss.

"Credit to them because they dug in and battled hard. It's not an excuse, but the pitch was heavy and we like to play football.

"It's up to me as a manager to help the players to adapt and change their style. We need to find a balance.

"We don't want to become a long-ball team because we've got good footballers, but we need to mix it up. That's what other teams in this league do."

Melford have the chance to rediscover some winning form when they travel to relegation-threatened Thetford Town on Saturday (3pm).

n Meanwhile, Hadleigh United's run of winless results extended to five matches after their trip to Godmanchester Rovers.

Hadleigh goalkeeper Ben Nower made a string of saves at Bearscroft Lane, but he was powerless to prevent the home team from running out 4-0 victors.

Having dropped down to 11th in the table, the Brettsiders will have the chance to return to winning ways when Kirkley & Pakefield visit Millfield on Saturday (3pm).

n There was more positive news for Cornard United, who won for the first time in the First Division since the end of last month.

Chris Tracey’s men faced Stowmarket Town at Greens Meadow, a venue where the hosts had not been defeated since December 5.

However, Romario Dunne scored twice and Luke Payne added a further goal to seal a 3-0 victory for the visitors.

On Saturday, Cornard are on the road again as they make the trip to Ram Meadow to take on Team Bury (3pm).

n Like Cornard, Halstead Town were 3-0 victors as they saw off the challenge from Downham Town at Rosemary Lane.

It was the third time that these two sides had met in 2016 and the Humbugs have come out on top on each occasion.

Ross Elkins was first to strike with a shot into the roof of the net, before Jake Brown volleyed in a second goal as the encounter ticked towards the interval.

The scoring was completed in the second half by Sam Cripps, who kept his cool from the penalty spot after substitute Jordan Hutchings had been fouled.

Mark Benterman’s men have now won five of their last six games and they will take that positive form to Debenham LC on Saturday (3pm).

n Tenth-placed AFC Sudbury Reserves were held to a 1-1 draw by Debenham LC at the Wardale Williams Stadium last Friday.

The hosts fell behind, but a share of the spoils were secured by substitute James Axcell.

On Saturday, the Sudbury youngsters are due to travel to Brewers Green Lane, home of Diss Town in seventh position (3pm).