Planters fall in Essex
Hipperson free kick not enough
Heybridge Swifts 3 Norwich United 1
Bostik League North Division
Despite Adam Hipperson’s fantastic first half equaliser the Planters were disappointing against a very good Heybridge Swifts side and two second half goals gave the hosts the points on a cold night in Essex.
Tim Henery returned after illness to replace the injured Liam Jackson and Shaun Wones returned to the starting line-up after injury with Charlie Hitch dropping to the bench. Also on the bench was Keirron Rose after a lengthy lay-off after a broken leg.
The Planters were first to show, Hipperson getting to the byline but his cut back was in fron of his teammates.
Immediately at the other end Lewis Dark shot wide from the edge of the area after a cross had only been half cleared.
Hipperson saw a shot blocked and at the other end Luque forced Wilton to save with his legs as play continued to see chances at both ends.
Nathan Stewart outpaced a defender down the right and cut in but saw his shot pushed behind at the near post by Swifts’ keeper Danny Sambridge.
Luke Callender began to cause the Planters defence problems, a shot on the turn from ten yards was blocked, Sam Watts had to deal with his cross and the a glancing shot from Luque’s cross went wide.
The deadlock was broken in the 32nd minute, Dark put Harrison Chatting away with a good through ball and he calmly slotted past the advancing Andy Wilton.
The Planters were only behind for six minutes after a lovely move between Stewart and Hipperson drew a foul from Ryan Henshaw. Hipperson stepped up to curl a lovely free kick into the top corner from just outside the area.
Callender shot wide from outside the box and Chatting saw a shot ruled out by an offside flag as the hosts finished the half on the front foot.
Keirron Rose replaced Tim Henery at the start of the second half but before the Planters had a chance to settle they were behind once more, Luque running onto a ball from the right to curl a shot into the bottom corner within a minute of the restart.
Chances were fewer and farther between as Heybridge defended their lead although a cross shot from substitute Matt Price was helped wide by Wilton.
A well timed tackle denied Stewart a chance of a shot from wide on the right and from the resultant corner Andy Eastaugh headed narrowly over.
Price shot over from a cutback and Ben Griffiths shot narrowly wide as the hosts tried to extend the lead and they eventually scored a third when Price cut inside from the left and hit a shot inside the near post.
Sambridge had to scramble away a Hipperson free kick at the near post and Wilton saved well at close range from Chatting in the closing seconds as the Swifts finished worthy winners.
Heybridge: Sambridge, Ramon, Cooney, Dark (Krasniqi 73), Henshaw, Stevenson, Chatting, Griffiths, Callander (Price 62), Gardner (Clayden 84), Luque. Unused subs: Godbold, Cawley.
Planters: Wilton, Mackie, Applegate (Datocampol 83), Wones, Eastaugh (Kutsirayi 86), Watts, Jones, Pollock, Henery (Rose 46), Stewart, Hipperson.
Referee: Craig Barnett. Assistants: Brett Grant & James Masson.