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Smith delighted with response from Walsham after slow start

VASE SUCCESS: Match action from Saturday's Buildbase FA Vase second qualifying round tie between Boston Town and Walsham-le-Willows
VASE SUCCESS: Match action from Saturday's Buildbase FA Vase second qualifying round tie between Boston Town and Walsham-le-Willows

Walsham-le-Willows boss Paul Smith is now starting to reap the rewards from having a full squad to choose from at Summer Road.

The Willows endured a slow start this season, picking up just one win from their opening seven games in all competitions, which included exiting the Emirates FA Cup at the first hurdle.

Walsham’s fortunes have turned around in the last four weeks though, with Smith’s men unbeaten in their last six heading into their return to Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division action this weekend.

With Hadleigh United (tomorrow, 3pm) and Ipswich Wanderers (Wednesday, 7.45pm) both set to visit the Willows over the next week, Smith is hoping his side can keep up their recent upturn in form.

“We had a bit of a slow start,” the Walsham manager said. “Without the holidays and players being unavailable we’ve now got a full squad up and running.

“We can’t get too excited and have just got to continue to take it one game at a time.

“A couple of our lads went over to Hadleigh this season so it will add a bit of spice to it.

“Hadleigh have got plenty of young lads who will be wanting to prove themselves, but hopefully our experience will come through in the end.”

The Willows struck twice in the final 10 minutes on Saturday as they came from 2-1 down to beat United Counties League Premier Division side Boston Town 3-2 in the Buildbase FA Vase.

After Ryan Clarke’s opener was cancelled out by goals from Boston’s Alex Beck and Curtis Revell, Andrew Wood and Josh Curry both netted late on to secure a dramatic win for Walsham.

Smith’s men have been handed a home tie against Tring Athletic, of the Spartan South Midlands League Premier Division, in the first round on October 22.

n In the First Division, Stowmarket Town manager Rick Andrews is preparing for a tricky double header, with a trip to Holland FC tomorrow (3pm), followed by a home clash with Framlingham Town on Tuesday (7.45pm).

The Old Gold and Blacks thumped 10-man Wisbech St Mary 6-1 last weekend to consolidate second place in the table and maintain their unbeaten league record.

“Holland and Framlingham are going to be two really tough games,” Andrews said. “If we could pick up four points I’d be pleased, two wins and I’d be over the moon, but it will be a tough ask.”

n Team Bury got back to winning ways on Tuesday with a 4-2 win over Woodbridge Town, while Needham Market Reserves drew 1-1 with Debenham LC.

Tomorrow, Bury visit Leiston Reserves, while Needham go to Diss Town (both 3pm).


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