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Canaries’ conquerors suffer an acrimonious divorce from cup

ON TARGET: Shane Leech (right) fired Thetford Town into the lead, but his joy was shortlived as Dereham Town hit back to win 2-1
ON TARGET: Shane Leech (right) fired Thetford Town into the lead, but his joy was shortlived as Dereham Town hit back to win 2-1



Thetford Town 1

Dereham Town 2

Stephen Fry’s wedding is the only Norfolk celebration Thetford Town can hope to be invited to in 2015 after exiting the county’s Senior Cup.

Their quarter-final opponents visited Mundford Road on the day it was revealed the comedian and writer would wed Elliott Spencer in Dereham.

Having famously downed Fry’s beloved Norwich City in the previous round, Thetford had hoped for their own joyful union with the Norfolk Senior Cup this spring, but instead Dereham’s Ryan Hawkins swept the competition off its feet with a stunning second-half volley that left the Brecklanders with the feeling of an acrimonious divorce.

“It’s disappointing we’re out, but we gave a good account of ourselves,” said Thetford manager Mark Scott, who had hoped to lead his side down the Carrow Road aisle. “We wanted that Norwich fixture and then got the result, but after playing so well against Dereham I felt we deserved a little bit more.”

The Brecklanders more than matched their rivals for an hour, although Sam Bond and Alex McIntosh had to clear the ball off the line.

Inexplicably, Ryan Skipp and Mihails Propustins dummied the ball when clear shots were on, but Sam Bryant hit the post just after the interval before Shane Leech jinked his way into the penalty area and placed home a fantastic opening goal in the 54th minute.

However, that advantage was annulled when Michael Clunan thumped in an equaliser before Ryan Hawkins broke Thetford’s hearts with a spectacular volley from above his waist that nestled in the top right corner.

The Brecklanders tried to convince the Senior Cup they were worth another chance, but Dereham clung on and rode off into the sunset for a semi-final tie.


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