Castlemen close gap at the top with win over leaders

CREATIVE FORCE: Cyrus Thopre (pictured in action earlier this season) assisted Framlinghams second goal against Coggeshall

CREATIVE FORCE: Cyrus Thopre (pictured in action earlier this season) assisted Framlinghams second goal against Coggeshall

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THURLOW NUNN LEAGUE

FIRST DIVISION

Framlingham Town 2

Coggeshall Town 1

Framlingham moved to within three points of early pace-setters Coggeshall thanks to a slender victory over the Essex outfit on Saturday.

The home side made the ideal start in just the second minute when Kieran Nicholls floated a free-kick to the far post, from where Johny Kerridge rose to head in.

The in-form Danny Smith should have doubled the lead in the eighth minute, but from six yards out he headed off target.

It took the leaders a little while to settle into the contest, yet once they did, problems were caused.

Tom Monk saw his appeal for a penalty waved away by the referee, before Shamido Pedula crashed his strike from the edge of the area against the underside of the crossbar.

But despite Coggeshall’s growing influence on proceedings, it was Framlingham that scored the game’s second goal with the break approaching.

Cyrus Thorpe galloped down the left wing and after reaching the byline he crossed for Smith to fire in from close range.

Framlingham had the odd foray forward after the restart, but largely the second half was dominated by Coggeshall trying to find a way back into the game.

They located it 20 minutes from time when Monk showed good composure to chip Gary Rose in the hosts’ goal.

However, despite further pressure coming their way in the closing stages, Mel Aldis’ Framlingham, who have two games in hand on the visitors, held out to claim the victory.

n Framlingham shipped two late goals as they exited the Thurlow Nunn League Challenge Cup on Tuesday evening to fellow Suffolk side Walsham-le-Willows.

Premier Division Walsham were the better of the two teams during the first half and they had a great chance to take the lead in the 32nd minute at Badingham Road.

Andrew Wood’s cross presented Craig Nurse with an open goal, but the attacking midfielder could only turn the ball against the crossbar.

Framlingham grew into the contest and went close through Smith and Nicholls.

They eventually took the lead in the 72nd minute when Anthony Johnson’s header found Smith, who won the contest with Walsham goalkeeper Duncan McNally before curling the ball inside the post.

Further opportunities fell to Smith and Jake Taylor, but neither player was able to able to provide the clinical touch.

And those misses were duly punish in the final three minutes by Walsham striker Wood, who was not in such a charitable mood.

He first rifled a low shot beyond Rose’s reach and then just when it seemed as though extra-time was inevitable, the frontman volleyed in to send Walsham into the next round.

n Tomorrow Framlingham travel to face Holland FC (3pm) — a side who like them have impressed so far in their first season at Step Six.

The coastal outfit have lost just once this term and sit two points adrift of Framlingham after the same amount of games.

They have been particularly impressive at home, with 27 goals scored in just seven games — 10 of which came in one fixture against Leiston Reserves.

Similar to Framlingham, Holland were knocked out of the League Cup on Tuesday by Premier Division opposition , Stanway Rovers.

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