THURLOW NUNN LEAGUE
Halstead Town 2
Fakenham Town 1
IF FAKENHAM Town have any complaints about this result, they have only themselves to blame as they had effort after effort on goal against Halstead in the league opener at Rosemary Lane.
The main culprit was striker James Page – he went close after just three minutes and continued to do so throughout the match.
He screwed a shot wide here, shot across the face of goal there and was blasting over the bar with aplomb.
Halstead’s sorties were rare in the first half – Danny Sakal rattled the cross bar and when the ball came back to James Murray, Ghosts keeper Tommy Rix made a brilliant save, and after a terrific scramble in the box Jordan Palmer’s effort hit the top of the bar.
Up the other end it was all Page watching attempts fall short of the target.
The second half had barely started when Reis Farley-Hearn picked up a ball for Halstead deep into the opposing half, swept forward and then laid off a delicious reverse pass to Ryan Crush to fire home.
Ten minutes later, Jordan Palmer lifted the ball over a static Ghosts defence and Jordan Hutchings fired the ball home with venom.
From then on the match belonged to Fakenham.
Halstead looked fatigued in defence and attack after attack rained in on their goal — when they did clear their lines, they played the ball straight back to the opposition.
So on 70 minutes, they cracked when that man Page tapped home from a corner.
After that Halstead were on the rack, but to their credit, they defended in the extreme with some great individual rearguard action.
In the end, it was Fakenham’s inability to hit the target that was the real difference in this match.
Halstead go off to the seaside to play Clacton in the FA cup on Saturday.
Halstead: Walker, Drew, Murray (Stanley 52), Hurkett, Cunliffe, Palmer, Sakal, Hutchings, Crush (Root 66), Hearn, Murray (Carter 57). Not used: Willis, Thurgood.