Blofield Utd 1 Caister 0
Oliver strike proves the difference between the two sides
Blofield welcomed a host of players back for the visit of Caister, the Beavers hoping to win their third home league game in a row.
Back into the squad came Basey-Fisher, Ferej, Hart & Banham. Manager Didwell though kept faith with near enough the same starting eleven with only Banham coming in for Cox meaning the other three returnees took their place on the bench.
Blofield XI: Ian Stones, Danny Mckail, Matt Banham, Alain Medina, Isaac Mace, Jack Robinson, Dan Stobbart, Tom Wright ©, Will Bennett, Rob Fryers, Orren Oliver.
Oliver threatened in the first minute but Molloy cleared for Caister. It took 10 minutes for the next meaningful action to take place as Nicholl’s saw his scuffed shot deflected for a corner which was subsequently cleared.
On a difficult bumpy surface, it was the home team though making most of the running.
In the 13th minutes, a deep Tom Wright free kick found Fryers who shot straight at Molloy. A minute later Fryers again headed wide from a corner.
Ten minutes later, Blofield almost took the lead. Oliver held off two challenges but his shot was well blocked by Molloy. The rebound was collected by Robinson who feed Wright. The Blofield skipper moved the ball out of his feet and curled a delightful shot past the keeper only for the ball to clip the top of the bar.
It was still Blofield in control and Oliver was heavily involved with the home side’s good work. On the half hour, once again he was thwarted by Molloy and five minutes Oliver, Bennett & Robinson combined for Fryers whose first-time effort was well wide.
Against the run of play Caister almost snatched the lead as Ward shot wide when he should have done better.
Mace headed wide from another Wright free kick as the half closed with the home side unable to find the breakthrough their play deserved.
H/T: Blofield Utd 0 Caister 0
Blofield continued to dominate and in the 47th minute, Bennett chipped the ball over to Oliver whose first- time shot was wide of the post.
However, Caister did respond this time and in the 53rd minute it took a brilliant stop from Stones to deny Barnden giving the away side the lead.
This was an important save as two minutes later, the home side finally took one of their chances as Oliver beat the offside trap and slotted past Molloy in the Caister goal to put the home side one up.
Blofield should have doubled their lead five minutes later as Robinson looked to feed the ball to Oliver when he looked better placed to take the shot himself, the danger being subsequently cleared.
Controversy entered the game in the 70th minute as Oliver found himself through once again only for Molloy to block his goal-bound shot, it appeared with his hands, whilst outside the area. The ref blew for a free kick and despite Caister protests that the shot was blocked by the goalkeeper chest, Molloy was shown a yellow card and the free kick decision stood. Both teams could feel aggrieved that either the free kick or subsequent yellow card were not the correct calls but that was not the end of the controversy as the free kick subsequently came to nothing.
Caister went straight down the other end and Bailey found himself in on goal. The full back tucked the ball under the on-rushing Stones, who subsequently upended the Caister player. The ball seemed to heading into the Blofield goal but somehow Medina cleared the ball off the line via the inside of the post!! Caister players and management were then incensed that play was not brought back for the reward of a penalty following Stone’s challenge as referee Harmer stuck to her decision of a corner.
This proved to be the final main action of the game. Oliver, Robinson and Stobbart all missed half chances to put the game to bed as Caister pushed men forward for an equaliser as the Referee blew the final whistle.
This was a hard-fought win for the Beavers against a determined Caister side. Both teams struggled on an unforgiving bumpy pitch but manager Didwell was pleased with the result, if not the performance. This result amazingly put Blofield within two points of 5th place with a number of games in hand, of which the next is Tuesday night, at home against Stalham Town.