DIVISION ONE NORTH
AFC Sudbury 3
Burnham Ramblers 0
Despite putting in a standout performance on his debut, new AFC Sudbury signing Steve Spriggs has said there is far more to come from him.
After Ryan Henshaw fired AFC into an early lead on Tuesday, Spriggs’ shot set up Sam Clarke to tap in before capping a memorable debut with a 25-yard screamer within five minutes of the restart.
The 25-year-old, who scored a hat-trick on his last visit to The MEL Group Stadium in a summer pre-season friendly with King’s Lynn Town, joined from the Linnets ahead of kick-off on dual registration forms, initially on a short-term deal.
But while keeping his long-term options open, he told the Yellows’ fans they haven’t seen the best of him yet.
“I’m on a month’s loan at the moment,” said the former Cambridge United Academy player, who played under AFC boss David Batch at Wroxham.
“I spoke to the gaffer at Lynn as I haven’t been playing as much as I would like and I am trying to get a bit of fitness and come over and see what happens.
“I’m not 100 per cent at the moment, I am about 60 per cent, so hopefully in the next few matches I will be increasing that.”
The Chatteris-based player, who runs a franchise of one of Batch’s Premier Sport children’s coaching centres, was King’s Lynn’s top scorer in their Evo-Stik (Northern) Division One South championship-winning campaign last season with 27 league goals and said it was good to rediscover his goalscoring touch on his AFC debut.
“Goals are one thing that have been missing from my game this year, so hopefully I can chip in,” said the player who has played professionally in the Swedish third division alongside former AFC player Rhys Darg.
“It was nice to get on the scoresheet as I have been a bit low on confidence, but hopefully I have turned the corner tonight.”
Spriggs replaced Jamie Forshaw on the right wing in a 4-2-3-1 formation with Payton Swatman in for the injured Michael Shinn and Matt Daniels filling his holding role.
Centre-back Ryan Henshaw sent a 35-yard effort flying past the post after two minutes, before his 25-yard shot, after cutting in from the left, skidded off the turf into the bottom left-hand corner for the opener eight minutes later.
Spriggs popped up on the left after 21 minutes and hit a low left-foot drive from outside the area that Jack Parr could only get a hand to and Sam Clarke followed in to slide in his side’s second at the far post.
It could have been more with the debutant twice going close to a goal himself and Swatman heading over before the break, with the Essex visitors not able to register a shot, despite forcing six corners.
Spriggs had the goal his eye-catching performance deserved soon after the break when Swatman drove forward before feeding the winger, who turned his man before unleashing a thunderbolt into the top right-hand corner.
Swatman went immediately close to making it 4-0 from Spriggs’ cross, while Alex Archer came smartly off his line to block well from Burnham’s Bradley Nobbs after 58 minutes.
The rest of the match petered out as a contest though as AFC went seven unbeaten in all competitions, four in the league.
n For a video of manager David Batch’s thoughts on the game and Spriggs, log on to www.suffolkfreepress.co.uk/sport