Mildenhall are punished for making a slow start

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RIDGEONS LEAGUE

PREMIER DIVISION

Mildenhall Town 0

Brantham Athletic 1

MILDENHALL were left to rue a sloppy start as title-challengers Brantham ground out a narrow victory at Recreation Way.

The visitors were far quicker out of the blocks and although Josh Pope reacted well to save a Dave Grimwood shot after eight minutes, slack marking from the resulting corner allowed Tom Wray to open the scoring.

Alex Drennan nearly made it two from another corner, but Hall should have equalised midway through the half from their first real attack.

Some sharp passing ended with David Cooper sending Owen Paynter clean through on goal, but the striker skied his effort.

The rest of the half was uneventful, but after the interval the home side kicked into gear to dominate the play.

Town’s best spell during this period yielded three chances for top scorer Andrew Wood in the space of 10 minutes.

First he beat two defenders but drove inches wide, then his volley from Alex Steed’s pinpoint cross was blocked by keeper Ryan Bedingfield, before Wood finally shot right across the face of goal from a tight angle.

Town also had a strong penalty appeal turned down when Sean Hefferon was brought down, but Brantham were still a danger on the break and Dan Pryke and Lee Grimwood missed chances to extend their side’s lead.

At the other end, Cooper’s dipping volley went just wide and Michael Harvey drew another save from Bedingfield, but the away side stood firm to keep their title hopes very much alive.

n Mildenhall have a blank weekend. Their next fixture is on March 10 at home to Dereham Town (3pm).