Tuesday round-up: Needham beaten at home

Sam Newson, right
Sam Newson, right
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Needham Market suffered just their second defeat of the season and had their lead at the top of Ryman League Division One North cut to a point.

The Marketmen, who earned 17 corners during the match, failed to make their dominance pay thanks to some incredible goalkeeping by Danny Sambridge and some poor finishing in front of goal.

Sambridge made a reaction stop low to his right to keep out Sam Newson’s downward header from Ian Westlake’s cross before getting his body in the way of a strike from the latter.

However, there was nothing he could do when Luke Ingram’s right-wing corner was put back into the box from the far side by Westlake and the in-form Newson scored his eighth goal in four games with a cheeky close-range backheel.

Youngster Ace Howell was one of Needham’s brightest options in attack and he was twice denied by Sambridge, who also blocked Ingram’s rasping drive.

Kem Izzet, Ollie Fenn and Westlake were among those to miss the target and Needham were made to pay for their profligacy in stoppage time at the end of the first half.

The hosts failed to clear properly and Neil Richmond found the bottom left corner with his left foot before Billy Hunt, closely marked with his back to goal 18 yards out, swivelled and beat Phillips with an incredible volley.

Tempers began to fray after half-time and Needham ran out of ideas in attack, despite facing 10 men for the final half an hour when Liam Springett went over the ball and caught Brendon Heath with a nasty challenge on the midfielder’s shin and ankle.

Centre-half Sam Nunn had Needham’s best effort of the second period with a chest and volley that any of his side’s striker’s would have been proud of, but Sambridge spectacularly turned the shot around the post.

Ingram, Westlake, Howell, Newson, Fenn and Darryl Coakley all missed the target during the second period as Heybridge clung on for three points.

In the Thurlow Nunn League Red Insure Challenge Cup, Adam Burroughs, Adam Murray and Alex Steed fired Mildenhall Town to a 3-1 triumph over Haverhill Rovers.

Tonight, Bury Town visit Grays Athletic (7.45pm) without striker Steve Holder — who has returned to Mildenhall — but Cambridge United loanee Ayrton Bevins could be in line for his first start since signing on Friday.