Downham Town prove spot-on in Norfolk Senior Cup thriller
NORFOLK SENIOR CUP
Downham Town 4
Swaffham Town 4 (after ET) Downham Town won
5-4 on penalties
Downham Town provided something of a Norfolk Senior Cup shock against near-neighbours Swaffham Town on Saturday in a game that had almost everything.
Eight goals, a sending-off, the woodwork struck a number of times and the lottery of a penalty shoot-out left fans on the edge of their seats during a dramatic afternoon at the Memorial Field.
Downham Town, who had Jonno Sykes sent off in the second half, had to come from behind before booking their passage into the next round against a Swaffham side who struck the woodwork no fewer than four times.
Beaten Swaffham boss Paul Hunt admitted it was frustrating to exit the competition at the first hurdle but was pleased with the spirited fight his lads put in.
Hunt said: “Downham is always a tough place to go and you have to work really hard to get anything from your games there. It is always disappointing when you go out of the cups and it is frustrating.
“I thought we played very well and there won’t be many sides who will score four goals away from home and not go through.
“The lads put a real shift in, it was a tough and competitive derby and I thought we dug in and showed a lot of character. When it goes to penalties you know it is a lottery.”
Joe Jackson, played through by Alex Vincent, opened the scoring in the 13th minute before Downham levelled from the penalty spot in the 36th minute and took the lead on the stroke of half-time.
Liam Reed equalised for the Pedlars ten minutes into the second half with a strike from 45 yards and the Pedlars took the lead for the second time in the tie when Jackson headed home Vincent’s corner.
The hosts made it 3-3 but then had Sykes sent for an early bath.
Downham took the lead six minutes into extra-time before Vincent redressed the balance and sent the game into penalties, where Swaffham’s Tom Kendrick saw his spot-kick saved.
On target for Downham were Ben Baxter-Hunt with a hat-trick and Karl Tansley.
n In the other tie, Premier Division Fakenham Town, last season’s finalists, were humiliated 3-1 by Anglian Combination Division One outfit Yelverton at Clipbush Park.
n Tonight, Swaffham Town are at Debenham LC in the League Challenge Cup.