Kirkley & Pakefield 1 Great Yarmouth Town 2: Late drama as Bloaters claim superb win

Action from Great Yarmouth Town's win at Kirkley & Pakefield Picture: STEVE WOOD

Action from Great Yarmouth Town's win at Kirkley & Pakefield Picture: STEVE WOOD - Credit: Archant

The Bloaters travelled to Kirkley buoyed by a good win in the Vase and duly put an end to their poor league run with an excellent win against a side who were hoping to climb to the top of the table.

With skipper Ady Ager suspended and defender Kierron Rose moving to Norwich CBS the defence was re-shuffled.

Ray Urry retained his pace at right back and Josh Ford returned to left back to give the defence a youthful look. Ben Lewis partnered Jordan Forbes in the centre with the latter playing his 200th game for the club.

After a deluge just before kick-off the Friday night fixture kicked off with the Bloaters on the front foot.

Just after the half-hour mark Urry went surging into the Kirkley half and played the ball wide to Hagan. The young winger returned the favour and Urry hit a perfectly placed shot into the corner of the net to give the visitors the lead.

A free-kick was awarded to the home side on the stroke of half-time and Lopez’ shot cannoned off the bar.

As expected from a side sitting second in the table, the hosts came out pressing for an equaliser after the break and Kingsley Barnes did well to save from Haylock and Will should have done better from the rebound. The Bloaters then saw the influential Lewis hobble off to be replaced by Miles Palmer.

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The home side to continued to press but the determined Bloaters were defending well with Urry and Forbes sticking manfully to their task.

Midway through the second half the visitors were awarded a free-kick, Sanders overhit his shot and as Rix came to claim he fumbled the ball into his own net to extend the lead.

The last 15 minutes belonged to Bloaters’ keeper Barnes as he saved from Will and then denied the home side with a brilliant save from a 25 yard free-kick. With 10 minutes left Roots made contact with Haylock in the area and referee Mark Chalkley had no hesitation in awarding a penalty. Miguel Lopez stepped up and duly fired in the spot-kick to give the Kirkley revival more purpose.

Barnes rushed out to deny Harvey-Cooper and then saved well from Flower’s header as the home side’s assault continued. With four minutes of normal time left a tackle by Forbes on Harvey-Cooper was deemed illegal and another spot-kick was awarded, despite the Bloaters’ angry protests. Lopez stepped up again but this time Barnes flung himself to right and parried the ball out and the rebound was fired wide. The Royals continued to press for an equaliser but the visitors held firm.

Bloaters: Barnes, Urry, Ford, Bartram, Forbes, Lewis, Roots, Eagleton, Perfect, Sanders, Hagan. Subs: Holmes, Catchpole, Palmer, Ward, McAra.

Great Yarmouth Town 0

Norwich United 2

After two good wins against Thetford and Kirkley the Bloaters were brought back down to earth by a rejuvenated Norwich United side on a cold Tuesday evening at the Wellesley.

The visitors showed their intent right from the kick-off against an unchanged Great Yarmouth team as Ben Jones hit a cross from the right and Liam Jackson headed narrowly wide.

The Planters looked a different side from that which was beaten a few weeks ago in the corresponding fixture at Plantation Park. They were sharper and looked the hungrier of the two sides.

Watts-Sturrock fired in a speculative shot that went narrowly wide before a good chance for Jones was saved by Barnes and scrambled away.

The visitors were given a let-off when Perfect sprinted past the two centre-backs but dragged his shot wide with only the keeper to beat.

With the clock winding its way to half-time the home side strung together a fine move that culminated in Eagleton firing in a powerful shot that was tipped over the bar by Pearson. From the resulting corner a swift break saw the ball reach the lively Jackson and he made no mistake to give the visitors a deserved lead.

From the restart Sanders fired in a shot from the edge of the area that whistled over the bar as the Bloaters looked to get a foothold in the game.

Substitute Davis then fired in a powerful drive as the home side began to show their teeth.

At the other end Barnes had to be alert as Forbes fired in a shot for the visitors and the winger’s namesake Jordan Forbes cleared away former Bloater Sam Applegate’s cross.

There were chances for both sides but the home side raised their game with 15 minutes to go. Chris Holmes was now on the pitch and he was agonisingly close to getting a touch to Sean Perfect’s powerful cross-shot. Another good move from the Bloaters finished with Hagan cutting inside and firing a shot narrowly wide. Minutes later Holmes was unlucky when his well-struck free-kick hit the side netting.

The home side continued to press without controlling the game and the Plnaters wrapped up the points deep into injury-time when the ball was gifted to Jackson and he finished well past Barnes.

Bloaters: Barnes, Urry, Ford, Bartram, Lewis (capt), Forbes, Roots, Eagleton, Perfect, Sanders, Hagan. Subs: Davis, Holmes Ager, Catchpole, Palmer. Man of match: Jordan Forbes.

Attendance: 90.