East Harling set for crunch Hadley & Ottaway Anglian Combination Division One encounter against promotion rivals Bungay Town
The big games continue to stack up for East Harling, who will face another stern test of their promotion credentials tomorrow afternoon with the visit of Bungay Town (2.30pm).
Only goal difference splits third-placed Harling and Bungay in second in the Hadley & Ottaway Anglian Combination Division One table, while league-leading Mundford are just a point better off.
The hosting Greens head into the Church Road encounter as the division’s form side, with no team having picked up more points than them over the course of the last 11 games.
Bungay, though, are also on a good run and since losing 2-1 to East Harling on December 15, they have collected 19 points from the 21 on offer. And with the top two guaranteed promotion to the Premier Division at the end of the season, the outcome of Saturday’s meeting could well prove to be crucial.
“We were the last team to beat them,” said East Harling boss Stacey Lawrence. “We scored a last-minute winner in that game and to be honest I thought they might have dropped away after that because it was a big blow, but they have reacted so well and deserve credit for that.
“We also beat them in the cup earlier in the season but that was due to a couple of lucky deflections in our favour.
“It is going to be a tough game. There is very little between the sides and it is such a big game – we seem to have a lot of those at the moment.
“The result is not going to determine anything because there will still be a lot of points left to play for, but we are keen to keep our good run going.”
East Harling, who will also travel to Kirkley & Pakefield Reserves on Wednesday (7.30pm), recorded an 8-0 win at bottom-of-the-table North Walsham last weekend.
Jordan Scent scored half of those goals, while Jack Barnett (2), Joseph Allen and Daniel Bareham were also on target.
“We started more attacking than we have done in recent games,” added Lawrence. “When you play a side towards the bottom it is important not to give them any encouragement.
“I would have taken a 1-0 win – it is about three points after all – but it was pleasing to see us be so clinical, especially during the first half.”