WEEEKEND FOOTBALL ROUND-UP + IPSWICH HIGHLIGHTS: Sudbury promoted as champions
AFC Sudbury ensured that they will be playing Ryman League Premier Division football next season courtesy of their 1-0 victory away at Tilbury on Saturday afternoon, while Haughley United booked their place at Portman Road.
Jamie Godbold’s Sudbury went into the clash at Chadfields with the knowledge that a point would be enough for them to clinch the Ryman League Division One North title.
As it was, they claimed all three thanks to leading goalscorer Craig Parker, who fired in the game’s only goal in the 41st minute.
It means that the Yellows have secured their status as champions with three matches to spare, one of which is against local rivals Bury Town on Wednesday night (7.45pm).
Meanwhile, Suffolk & Ipswich League outfit Haughley defeated higher-league Cornard United 2-1 in the semi-finals of the Suffolk Senior Cup.
Luke Payne gave Cornard the lead, but United responded with goals from Ryan Wragg and Romeul Cordington.
Elsewhere, in the Ryman League Premier Division, Michael Brothers bagged a brace as Needham Market boosted their survival chances with a 2-0 win away at Grays Athletic.
However, in the Division One North, Bury and Soham Town Rangers were defeated away at Thurrock and Witham Town respectively.
Mildenhall Town’s recent run of positive Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division form continued as they beat Haverhill Rovers 4-1, with Chris Bacon notching a hat-trick.
Long Melford also defeated Saffron Walden Town 2-0, but there was a big 7-0 loss for Walsham-le-Willows away at Stanway Rovers.
Thetford Town ran out 4-0 winners over Gorleston, while Hadleigh United racked up a 2-0 triumph against Whitton United.
There was not such positive news for Newmarket Town, though, as they slipped to a 4-1 loss at Godmanchester Rovers.
In the First Division, Ely City’s promotion quest remains on course as they recorded a 4-0 win at Braintree Town Reserves.
Diss Town were held to a 1-1 draw by Leiston Reserves, while Stowmarket Town posted a 7-0 victory in their home encounter against Dereham Town Reserves.
AFC Sudbury Reserves and Needham Market Reserves were on the wrong of hefty defeats at the hands of March Town United and Great Yarmouth Town respectively, with Halstead Town running out 1-0 victors over Haverhill Borough.
In the Barclays Premier League, Norwich City are still looking over their shoulder after they were defeated 1-0 away at fellow strugglers Crystal Palace.
The Canaries are now four points clear of third-from-bottom Sunderland, who they face at Carrow Road next weekend.
As for Ipswich Town, their winless run of Championship form extended to four matches as they lost 3-1 at home to Brentford.
*Read our fans’ views on both Ipswich Town and Norwich City in our print editions later this week, while extended highlights of Ipswich Town’s Saturday game can be viewed via a payment subscriber service on the club’s official website
Premier Division: Grays Athletic 0, Needham Market 2.
Division North: Thurrock 2, Bury Town 1; Tilbury 0, AFC Sudbury 1; Witham Town 3, Soham Town Rangers 2.
THURLOW NUNN LEAGUE
Premier Division: Thetford Town 4, Gorleston 0 (Friday); Godmanchester Rovers 4, Newmarket Town 1; Hadleigh Utd 2, Whitton Utd 0; Mildenhall Town 4, Haverhill Rovers 1; Saffron Walden Town 0, Long Melford 2; Stanway Rovers 7, Walsham le Willows 0.
First Division: Haverhill Borough 0, Woodbridge Town 1 (Wednesday); Haverhill Borough 0, Halstead Town 1 (Friday); AFC Sudbury Res 0, March Town Utd 7; Braintree Town 0, Ely City 4; Diss Town 1, Leiston 1; Needham Market Res 2, Great Yarmouth Town 6; Stowmarket Town 7, Dereham Town 0.
Suffolk Senior Cup: Cornard Utd 1, Haughley Utd 2.
Tuesday. Division North: Soham Town Rangers v Dereham Town.
Wednesday. Bury Town v AFC Sudbury.
THURLOW NUNN LEAGUE
Tuesday .Premier Division: Fakenham Town v Thetford Town; Haverhill Rovers v Hadleigh Utd.
Friday (15). Walsham le Willows v Ipswich Wanderers.
Tuesday. First Division: Braintree Town v Debenham LC; Cornard Utd v Haverhill Borough; Ely City v Wivenhoe Town; Stowmarket Town v Team Bury.
Wednesday. Needham Market Res v March Town Utd.