Melbourn’s six appeal

Papworth 1 Melbourn 6 MELBOURN began this away fixture in a lacklustre mood evidencing itself with some poor defending, wayward passing and generally an overall ineffective first half. Papworth opened the scoring when the flight of a free-kick deceived

Papworth 1 Melbourn 6

MELBOURN began this away fixture in a lacklustre mood evidencing itself with some poor defending, wayward passing and generally an overall ineffective first half.

Papworth opened the scoring when the flight of a free-kick deceived Glenn Pearse and presented a forward with a gift.

Shortly after, some good work in the Melbourn midfield involving Gary Norman and Michael Wagstaff released Jason Gray who fired a low shot inside the post to draw level at the interval.

It was clear that Melbourn needed to concentrate on their playing strengths rather than becoming embroiled in the spoiling tactics of the home team.

The second half started much brighter and an excellent one-two between Steve Marriott and Mark Williams saw the ball slotted home sweetly by Williams.

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Melbourn grew in strength and maintained pressure on the home goal, again seeing a further combination of passing for Gray to get his second of the game.

Papworth did their best to break down Melbourn but the visitors were too strong and in the 65th minute, Ash Bryan found Andy Richardson with a penetrating through ball, which was fired home for the first of Richardson's hat-trick.

Immediately from the kick-off Papworth's long effort sailed over Pearse's bar, and shortly after Bill Mansfield's attempt at a clearance brought a fine save from his keeper.

Gray sent close on a further two occasions, with both his efforts striking the post but the game was finished off nicely by Richardson who slotted home two goals in the last 10 minutes to secure an excellent away victory.

Fowlmere Metals 3 Nationals 2

AFTER going out of both cups in the two previous weeks, the only chance of silverware for Metals is in the league and they faced a tough game against Nationals.

Metals got off to a good start, moving the ball around confidently and were rewarded midway through the half when Paul Stokes rounded the keeper and coolly slotted home from an acute angle.

Metals failed to build on this lead and just before the break Nationals made it 1-1 when some poor defending let in the Nationals striker to slot home from six yards.

The second half saw Nationals have more of the ball and they soon took the lead when Dave Plester completely missed the ball giving the striker an easy tap-in.

Metals could have fallen even further behind if it had not of been for the tireless work-rate of Terry Woods who seemed to break up every move Nationals were creating.

Metals did not equalise until five minutes before the end when Plester latched on to a cross from Stokes and swept past the keeper.

The game seemed to have a draw written all over it until with seconds to go, Paul Stokes dribbled through the Nationals midfield and placed the ball into the bottom right hand corner of the net from 18 yards to cap off a fine personal display and a fine win.

Whittlesford Utd Res 5

Steeple Morden 2

STEEPLE Morden are left to concentrate on the league after crashing out of the cup following a heavy defeat by bogey team Whittlesford.

Transport problems affected preparations for Steeple who made a sluggish start against the young and vibrant home team.

Steeple were further disrupted by the loss of experienced central defender Paul Hutley after only 12 minutes but not before he had conceded a penalty which was expertly converted.

A mixture of slack defending and clinical finishing gave the dominant hosts a 4-0 lead within 35 minutes.

The normally reliable Roy Dunsford and Ben Holt both spawned opportunities to respond before Holt headed home just before half-time only to be denied by a tight offside decision.

At half-time, manager Kenny Watters made some needed positional changes and sent the visitors out to restore some pride.

Steeple responded with a positive start and created some good chances for Dunsford who was off target.

On the hour mark and against the run of play, Whittlesford broke away to extend their lead. To their credit, Steeple continued to battle and were eventually rewarded with two late goals.

Ben Holt maintained his record of scoring in every game when he found the bottom corner from the edge of the box before substitute Bob Dix bulged the net with a right foot half-volley.

Steeple will need to improve for the visit of unbeaten Great Chishill in a vital league match on Saturday.

Steeple: B Sarll, B Morris, A Smith, P Hutley (M Carlton), J Watters, M Holt , J Murphy , C Prothero, N Carlton (B Dix) , R Dunsford (K Parr), B Holt

Duxford Utd Reserves 1

Great Chishill 4

CHISHILL failed to perform to their potential in the Lower Junior Cup, but still bagged four goals, to overcome Duxford.

The hosts, two divisions below Division Three high flyers Chishill, made things extremely difficult for the visitors during the first half, working hard to prevent them enjoying their usual good passing game.

Chances were at a premium in a dull first half, although Elliot Drury had a goal dubiously ruled offside, after he had clearly run past two defenders after the ball had been played.

The longer the second half went on goal-less, the more Duxford fancied their chances.

The upset looked to be on, when they took the lead after an hour, sliding the ball home from six yards after breaking down the right.

The goal was a wake-up call for Chishill, who then turned the game around with two quick goals.

First, Oli Fitzgerald steered the ball in from the edge of the box, after Jonathan Drury's close range effort was saved.

Fitzgerald then turned provider, crossing from the right for Steve McGee to stab home.

Luke Tyler extended the lead when he was sent crashing in the box.

The referee controversially made him take his spot-kick twice, but he made no mistake on either occasion.

Substitute Chris Wilson headed the ball through for McGee to wrap the game up with a fourth, giving Chishill confidence going into Saturday's top of the table clash with Steeple Morden.

Chishill: Gallagher, Jackson, Manning, Gardiner, Bramwell, Fitzgerald, Tyler, E Drury, Edey, McGee, J Drury. Subs: Wilson, Gibson, R Drury.