by Derek Bish
PAUL Smith hopes his resurgent Walsham-le-Willows side will show Hadleigh United just how far they have come when they meet at Summer Road tomorrow (3pm).
The Willows were well beaten in the reverse fixture back in November during a disastrous run that saw Smith’s charges sink into a relegation battle.
But earning 10 points from a possible 15 since New Year’s Eve has given Walsham a four-point cushion to the Ridgeons League Premier Division dropzone and they now hope to climb the table.
“We’ve caught up the teams just above us, so if we can put another couple of wins together we should start climbing the league,” said Willows boss Smith. “We’ve been winning games but not gaining any places — now we can start moving up.”
Speaking about tomorrow’s clash with Hadleigh, Smith added: “We lost 3-0 over there and didn’t do ourselves any justice, so that’s a bit of a incentive for us.
“We got a bit of a run around over there, so hopefully we can return the favour.”
Lee Sim (knee ligaments) and Charlie Robinson (foot) are set to miss out on the match with United after limping off in the early stage sof their 4-1 success at Newmarket Town on Saturday.
The Willows reshuffled and this seemed to kick them into gear. A clever ball from Ollie Hughes found Sam Diaper and his cross landed at the feet of Will Brown, who turned two defenders and slotted in from a tight angle.
Five minutes later, good play between James Tatham and Paul Musgrove found man-of-the-match Ryan Foster, who twisted and turned three past defenders in the box and, from the tightest of angles, finished brilliantly.
Newmarket came out after the break with a different attitude and pinned Walsham back for the first 15 minutes.
Darren Coe went closest with a header before a mistimed tackle from Musgrove allowed Newmarket back into the game when, from the resulting quickly-taken free-kick, a ball to the far post allowed James Attwood to tap home.
Ryan Foster controlled the game from this point onwards with his creativeness causing havoc.
Brown’s second goal was gifted to him by Andy Youngs, who went to clear the ball but completely scuffed it in the air, which allowed the onrushing Brown to head home.
Hughes headed just wide, but it was only a matter of time before Walsham scored again and, on 85 minutes, Foster picked out Tatham, who flicked the ball on for Ben Soanes to finish well.
Walsham: McAnally, Lambert, Newman, Soanes, Simms (Morton 10), Hughes, Robinson (Diaper 18), Foster, Musgrove, Brown, Tatham. Subs not used: Taylor, Claridge.