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Wellesley loses fortress status

PUBLISHED: 14:07 18 December 2008 | UPDATED: 12:34 03 July 2010

The Bloaters in action against Downham at the weekend. Downham won 2-1.

The Bloaters in action against Downham at the weekend. Downham won 2-1.

Great Yarmouth Town 1, Downham Town 2

The walls of Fortress Wellesley came tumbling down on Saturday thanks to a combination of the weather, Downham's opportunism and Yarmouth's own failings.

Great Yarmouth Town 1, Downham Town 2

The walls of Fortress Wellesley came tumbling down on Saturday thanks to a combination of the weather, Downham's opportunism and Yarmouth's own failings.

Losing two league games on the bounce for the first time this season, Yarmouth fell to their first home league defeat in atrocious conditions but really they were victims of their own lack of nous, writes Gerry Brown.

Throughout a first half in which they had the roaring wind and driving rain behind them, the Bloaters - after early shots by Stewart Roach, Dominic Smith and Adam Sullivan - failed to send in a significant attempt on the Downham goal.

Roach and David Hinton did then see close-range efforts hit the visitors' crossbar but each time keeper Jamie Gollings grabbed the ball before a home player could put his head in where it matters.

Downham against the wind sensibly kept the ball on the ground when they had the opportunity to get forward, but came up against a resolute Elliot Pride, back in the side after injury.

The second half opened explosively, the visitors taking the lead after 47 minutes. With the conditions worsening, and the central areas of the pitch turning into a quagmire, Downham attacked down the flanks. Pride lost his grasp on the slippery ball as the cross came in and Cory Barker said thank you very much.

Smith equalised after 55 minutes, turning the ball in after Gollings similarly lost the ball in a goalmouth melée, and for a while Yarmouth looked likely winners.

But Downham counter-attacked down the left flank again and there was Matt Garrod at the back post to finish the move in the 67th minute.

It was not an afternoon for faint hearts and Sullivan showed the right spirit and tenacity with a long-range shot that had Gollings scrambling.

But Pride had to be alert as Downham, now with the weather in their favour, kept him on his toes. On one occasion he needed to race to the edge of his area to hastily kick clear as a forward bore down.

Substitute José Vide hoisted a useful-looking ball for fellow-sub Jake Reed to run onto, but defenders intervened just in time, and Reed missed a late chance to win at least a share of the spoils with a shot that was narrowly wide.

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