Lay-off leaves Acle rusty

Sprowston Athletic 2, Acle United 2AFTER six weeks without a game it was obvious to everyone at Bridewell Lane that the Acle players were going to be rusty.

Sprowston Athletic 2, Acle United 2

AFTER six weeks without a game it was obvious to everyone at Bridewell Lane that the Acle players were going to be rusty.

But it was thought they would be better than their Dolphin Autos Anglian Combination Premier Division display at Blue Boar Lane.

Acle knew they needed a win to keep the pressure on the top teams if they were not to let their fine start to the season go to waste because of the long lay-off experienced during the bad weather period.

The first half was played out mainly in the area between the two penalty areas with the hosts perhaps unlucky not to be ahead at the break.

Acle, still missing several influential players, struggled to get any foothold in the game and they went behind when Jason Armes scored direct from a free-kick taken wide on Athletic's left which was curled into the far corner of Carter's goal without anybody touching it.

Most Read

Sprowston held their lead for only four minutes when Acle were awarded a free-kick from a similar position at the other end of the field.

Acle's dead ball specialist, Thaine Hacon, curled in a pin-point cross that saw Ricky Hodds out-jump the tall Steve Eastaugh and Damian Didwell and head the ball home for the equaliser.

The second half brought no respite to the weary legs of the rusty Acle players, but they forced their way in front from another free-kick taken by Hacon.

From an identical spot to where Armes had put the hosts ahead, Hacon gave Sprowston goalkeeper Chris Hills no chance with a curling free-kick that he planted into the far corner of the net.

Just when the visitors thought they had weathered the storm they were caught out at the death when referee Stuart Reeve, who had an excellent game in the middle, adjudged that Higgins had handled the ball.

Carter in Acle's goal saved the spot kick, but he was unable to prevent Simmons from steering the rebound into the bottom corner to level matters up, and the game finished all square.

Acle's walking wounded will all need to be fit if any silverware is to finish up in the Bridewell Lane lockers this season.

Tomorrow, Acle entertain Cromer Town (2.30pm.)