Saturday 27th September 2008
DEBENHAM LC 0, BLOATERS 1
Debenham – 1 Louis Johnson, 2 Mark Powling, 3 Jon Ince, 4 Neil Gooderham (c), 5 Shaun French,
6 Matt Norman, 7 Patrick Turley, 8 Rob Canfer, 9 Stuart Jopling, 10 James Heathcote, 11 Dale Vince, Subs: 12 Kevin Barker,
14 Ian Gedny, 15 Rob Kemp, 16 Chris Smith, 17 Joel Watkins.
Bloaters – Elliot Pride, Johnathan Watt, 3 Ollie Savage, 4 Gareth Palmer, 5 Adrian
Ager, 6 Alan Darby, 7 Darren Lamb, 8 Adam Sullivan (c), 9 Stewart Roach, 10 Chris Squire, 11 Scott Woodcock. Subs: 12 Jake
Reed, 14 Liam Bartley, 15 Jose Vide.
Referee – David Czyzewicz.
Yarmouth’s line-up saw Pride restored to goal in the holiday absence of Hilton, while the holidaying
Sewell was replaced by Watt. Scott Woodcock returned after missing last week’s trip to St Neots.
Yarmouth, looking for their first win at Debenham, kicked off with a strong sun on their backs but the game
was slow to get going. It was seven minutes before the Bloaters mounted a noteworthy attack when Woodcock took a cross-field
pass on the right from Squires and fired past the near post. Moments later he was to be found on the left and, taking a pass
from Palmer, fired wide of the other side of goal.
A good move, started by Lamb on the right, won a corner after ten minutes but from it Squire’s
cross was headed clear. For the home side, French shot over after a free kick routine but Yarmouth looked the better side
going forward at this early stage, though a Savage free kick from the half-way line drifted sadly wide.
Lamb and Woodcock worked another opening down the Yarmouth
right but this ended with a wasted cross. A Debenham defender looked to have touched the ball back to his ‘keeper but
the referee deemed otherwise.
The Bloaters’ defenders were putting in some firm and telling tackles when Debenham
attacked and there looked no way through for the home side, but the Division’s leading scorer Jopling had to be constantly
watched. Pride got down well to a Heathcote shot, conceding a corner at the near post after 23 minutes.
Debenham now raided with increasing frequency and little was seen of the visitors’
attack, but still the determined tackling continued in front of the Bloaters’ goal. In a rare break, Sullivan shot well
over. Then, Yarmouth won a corner, quickly followed by another
from which they stunned the home side by taking the lead. From the second of Woodcock’s corner kicks, Palmer rose to
head firmly home at the near post after 41 minutes.
A minute later, Sullivan, who had earlier taken a knock to the face, had to be substituted
as his vision continued to be affected and Reed went on.
Heathcote put a chance wide in the 49th minute, having been given too much room
and soon after Woodcock hit the side netting.
Ten minutes into the half, Pride was in trouble as he went to take a goal kick. The Yarmouth ‘keeper collapsed over the ball and after some minutes
treatment left the field leaning heavily on therapist Terry Reeves. It appears Pride’s calf had gone into spasm and
Palmer took the No. 1 shirt while Vide went on from the bench. Debenham substituted Smith for Heathcote.
Yarmouth were now up against it, with both captain and goalkeeper off injured and no defenders on the bench.
However, the spirit in the side is total and they defended with all their might and skill. Perversely, Yarmouth went on to
do some of their best attacking in the game, and a good run by Reed on the right deserved at least a shot which never came.
The Yarmouth goal led a
charmed life in the 70th minute but Palmer was calmness personified and he confidently cleared up a Debenham attack.
At the other end, Roach robbed Johnson but Reed was just unable to latch on to the loose ball before the ‘keeper recovered
to snatch it up.
It was a nail-biting time for the Yarmouth
bench as the minutes ticked away, and more were to be added for another injury needing treatment. From a Savage free kick,
Roach then headed down to Vide who smashed his shot over the home bar from 25 yards. Woodcock then had a shot blocked after
79 minutes, and when Vide crossed the loose ball a home defender was forced into conceding a corner.
Debenham continued to exert pressure but seemed to lack conviction and Palmer had little
in the way of direct shots to deal with. Roach, indeed, went closest with an angled shot that went near to the line before
being booted away, and Ager got in a header from a free kick.
With the game in added time, Reed was replaced with Bartley, having taken a knock on the
leg, and Palmer produced a great diving save as Debenham actually got one on target. Yarmouth
had to endure ten minutes of added time before claiming a famous victory.
After the final whistle, Paul Tong said: “We played well for ten minutes in the first
half but the lads showed a lot of resilience and there are games like this when
you just have to grind out results. It’s the first time I’ve ever won here so I’m very happy!
“Gareth Palmer was the star of the show of course, scoring the goal, then going into
goal, but everybody worked their socks off, so I’m well pleased – it’s three points!”
Attendance - 55