THURLOW NUNN LEAGUE PREMIER DIVISION
Long Melford 1
Felixstowe & Walton Utd 3
Confronted by runaway leaders Felixstowe, injury-hit Melford, with eight regulars missing, faced a daunting afternoon, but made a fantastic battle of it.
Two minutes in, the leaders went ahead when indecision in the Melford defence allowed Miles Powell time and space to fire home.
For the next 15 minutes the Melford goal was under siege. An effort from Jordan Matthews coming closest when his shot shaved the bar.
After weathering the onslaught Melford started to find their rhythm, and a long-range shot from David Lopez saw Felixstowe keeper Danny Crump almost caught out, saving at the second attempt.
The Melford goal came after 23 minutes with some quality play when Hassan Ally made space down the left, and his cross found Callum Hemson, who swivelled to fire into the net.
This gave impetus to Melford, and for a period they looked the better team.
On 29 minutes they had an excellent chance to go ahead. Some good inter-passing between Ally and Ben Judge saw the final pass find Hemson three yards out. But the youngster screwed his effort wide.
Felixstowe started the second half at a high tempo, but Melford defended resolutely. A Stuart Boardley free-kick was headed wide by Dan Davis from an excellent position. At the other end, Melford, still very much in the game, pressed hard and a shot from Andy Fisher just cleared the bar. Shortly after, Melford coach Josh Sheppard, donning the gloves after a five-year absence, made the save of the match, an acrobatic effort to keep out a header from Rhys Barber.
On 64 minutes Felixstowe went ahead when, out of the blue, Powell fired home from 30 yards. Still Melford fought on and nearly clawed a goal back when Sam Bayliss got through but his effort was blocked by Crump.
The final goal came after 87 minutes when Powell turned provider for Scott Chaplin to net from eight yards.
Melford visit Walsham-le-Willows on Saturday.