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The First team welcomed high flying first division Cockfield Utd to Carlton Park with the opportunity for a place in the quarter finals of the Junior Cup.

With the pitch looking great following the recent addition of the new rope and post boundary, thanks to Steven Copping of Kiwi Fencing and Niki, the scene was set for a tough match which would provide a chance to see what level we are currently at.

We made a fast start and after only 3 minutes had a great opportunity to go ahead as we were awarded a penalty. Joe Moore (sponsored by Xtra Time Sports Development) stepped up but unfortunately his well struck shot cannoned back off the bar.

We continued to take the game to our opponents and created further chances through strikers Joe Moore and Kyle Messenger (sponsored by Ensors Accountants LLP), but unfortunately the keeper was not too troubled.

We were having the better of the play and working hard to win the ball back when not in possession, and Cockfield finally created a chance of note on the half hour when shooting wide.

The half ended with Cockfield putting us under pressure and just before the half time whistle a corner fell to their player who rifled home from short range.

So, after having most of the play and chances we went into half time 1-0 behind.

The goal seemed to spur on our opponents as they started the second half on the front foot creating some dangerous opportunities. They had a period of pressure which on the whole we soaked up well, but required a sharp save by Ben Vincent on the hour to keep us in the game.

Having weathered the storm we started to get some control back and went looking for the equaliser. On 65 minutes we had a free kick in a good position but Joe Moore's shot went over the bar, and a couple of minutes later Joe Miller headed over from a corner.

On 80 minutes a fantastic move from back to front, involving several passes, ended with a cross in front of goal but unfortunately out of reach of our strikers.

A minute later a cross shot from the right hand side by Joe Murphy had the keeper beaten but cannoned back off the bar.

This was our last chance of note and, despite all our pressure, we could not break through our resolute opponents, and the game ended in a 1-0 defeat.

It is a measure of how far we have come that the players and coaches are disappointed with the result against a side who sit second in division 1. On the balance of play and chances created we were the dominant side and can consider ourselves unfortunate not to be in the hat for the next round. However, we can take satisfaction that we more than competed with a strong side which should stand us well for the remainder of the season.

We wish Cockfield good luck for the quarter final and the rest of the season, and it was great that they stayed for a drink with us after the match.

Despite defeat, the players enjoyed a team building evening out after the match and we will now turn our attention to the league and promotion to division 1.

The Reserves travelled to Hadleigh Utd Brettsiders and came back with a fantastic 2-1 victory against a side above them in the table. Both goals were scored by Ben Crush (sponsored by Revells Removals).

Next week sees the First team travel to Great Blakenham, whilst the Reserves host top of the table Samuels FC.


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