All about TEAMWORK!
Bank holiday Monday saw the Planters (very) slight interest in the Premiership title disappear with all the five teams at the top securing good wins.
The boys travelled to the Hall you'd think with little bar pride to play for. After 12 unbeaten extending the run was important, plus securing sixth spot in the league kept the interest levels up.
Mildenhall won the toss and decided to give the Planters the advantage of the slope in the first period. After a disappointing first half against Newmarket it was important the boys took advantage and started as they finished Saturday.
The boys flew out of the traps and put the Hall under pressure from the off, after just seven minutes Paul Cook had the first of many good chances to follow, volleying the ball from outside the box which cleared the keeper and just past the post.
Minutes later Jamie Speller was too strong for Coe on the right and strode forward playing a good ball to Matt Blake, whose early strike was just wide. Four minutes later Lee Mason played an excellent through ball again putting Blakey through, Pope charged out and got a good block on Matts shot, Matt then put the rebound over.
Whilst it was all one way traffic, Popes huge clearances from the Hall box, out of hand was dropping inside Ben Nowers box, up the slope was impressive, and created a little work for Ships and Andy Eastaugh to deal with. On 28 minutes a free kick from Andrew Cusack deep into the Mildenhall box was met by Andrew Eastaugh who nodded the ball into a dangerous area, Paul Cook nodded it goalwards, beat the keeper but was cleared off the line at the back post by Cooper.
The Planters were in total control and on the half hour got the breakthrough their dominance deserved, Blakey got free down the left, Pope had a rush of blood and charged out to close him down, Matt rolled the ball past him and went round him, driving into the space towards the un guarded net, he slid it goalwards from a tight angle, a defender got back and got a foot to it, but Paul Cook following up pulled the ball back and over the line 0 - 1 Planters.
Minutes later Lee Mason, put Jamie Speller whose thumping strike was palmed over by Pope, Steve Shipley had a strong goalwards header from the corner, again cleared off the line by Cooper.
On forty minutes the Planters got a deserved second when a Cusack Corner, fell in the box and swivelling round Cooky got a good shot off which beat Pope into the corner 0 - 2 Planters.
The Hall had to thank Pope in the goal, and the back four for keeping them in the game four or five nil, wouldn't have been over flattering for a rampant Planters, Gary Gilmore and Jamie George were a constant thorn in the side of Cooper and Ricky Cornish, Gary gets my vote for man of the match, and Ricky got the MOM picked by the Mildenhall Maddo's. The Maddo's are a group of young supporters who have taken over their new stand, and provide a good humoured noisy support for Mildenhall singing throughout, nice to see at this level.
The second half started with Mildenhall making changes to their formation and going on the offensive, they got a goal back when an Attwood strike that was going wide came of a prone Steve Shipley and flew past Ben Nower into the corner, Mildenhall were on top Damian Hilton looked to make changes to counter the threat and get back in control of game, Gavin Lemmon replaced Matt Blake to bolster the midield, Gary Gilmore was replaced ten minutes later by Tom Jeal and the Planters went three at the back pushing the full backs up, Ben Jones came on for Adam Bennett who was not holding the ball up.
The boys settled playing up the slope and created another couple of good chances, by far the best falling to Paul Cook who already having a brace to his name could have wrapped it up and got his hat trick, a poor free kick was nicked by Cooky who was free in front of goal, his strike was high and wide, leaving us with a few more minutes of nailbiting. The final whistle went a great team performance, with everyone doing their bit, not least the management team, wise words and tactically astute substitutions.
Thirteen games un-beaten a fabulous run, and with Felixstowe coming to Plantation Park on Saturday and our final game of the season away to Brightlingsea, if we keep it going we'll have a major say in where the title finally goes bet neither side are looking forward to meeting us, we could even hand it to our old adversaries from Gorleston.
Other news, Thetford had a good win at CRC Wednesday, which drags them out of the bottom three, Fakenham have done enough to gain promotion, along with Whitton and Ipswich Wanderers from the first division different trips next season.
United : Nower. Speller, Cusack, Bennett (Jones 75) Shipley, Eastaugh, Gilmore(Jeal 72) Mason, Cook, Blake (Lemmon 58) George. unused sub Britcher