After a long trip in midweek, Tamworth made another long trip to take on the Marketmen of Needham.
Lambs captain Joel Kettle made his 50th appearance for the club as Gary Smith and Andy Danylyszyn were confirmed as remaining at the helm of the team through to the end of the season. The duo had been awarded the Southern Premier Central Team of the month 24 hours previously after picking up 13 points from 18 while their hosts had recorded just one win in the last six games.
Needham Market got the game underway with The Lambs kicking towards the Les Ward Stand end of the tidy and improving Bloomfields ground.
Stabana’s cross from the left on 3 forced the home defence to clear quickly away from the run of Concannon and Lait forced a corner but Beswick’s corner was cleared.
Lait forced his way through on 9 but couldn’t get the ball out from under his feet as he advanced into the area and The Lambs were trying to keep the ball down as the sun and wind played a part when the ball lifted above head height.
At the other end striker Marsden was unable to get control of the ball after a good move forwards to the edge of the area and Singh was happy to let it roll back to him.
Waite got into a good position on the edge of the box on 20 but his off balance shot went well wide of the mark.
Marsden struck a low shot from the right towards the near post on 22 and Singh dropped and smothered it easily.
A floated ball from Dias on 25 found the run of Clement to the edge of the area and he struck it on the volley, beat the keeper but it didn’t dip quickly enough and dropped over the bar.
Lait made a strong run past his marker on 31 and advanced into the area but was unable to get a shot away by the presence of Jessup and ended up prostrate on the floor past the touchline, After continuing play with 10 men, Lait returned to the field a minute or two later.
In the meantime Dias slid the ball through the home defence and Frances picked it up but was unable to use the chance to the Lambs advantage.
Waite was felled on the edge of the area and Bewsick stepped up to strike the ball from the right of the D on 38 and he curled it inside the near post to give The Lambs the lead. (1-0, 38 mins)
Kettle conceded a freekick 30 yards out and Marsden struck it low through the wall but it went straight into the arms of Singh.
Concannon made it 2-0 on 44 with a sublime piece of skill to get himself past his marker and into the box on the right and he rifled his shot past the keeper and in off the far post. (2-0, 44 mins)
Another freekick for the home side came in the two minutes of added time and Marsden’s deadball from the left was well struck but went over the bar.
Tamworth restarted proceedings and on 48 Beswick prevented the home side advancing over the halfway line so earned himself a booking in the process.
Sturgess made a meaningful run down the left on 52 and got past Concannon and Frances but the referee halted his progress to the bemusement of most watching to halt the Needham attack.
After a challenge inside the Lambs half by Waite on Heath the ball broke for Lait and he forged down the left channel to the edge of the area and fired past Jessup into the far corner to set the traveling fans behind the goal and around the ground off on celebrations again (3-0, 55 mins)
Another run from Sturgess on 58 saw him brought down and from the freekick Dan Morphew headed home in a crowded box and despite the Singh getting a hand to it he couldn’t push it around the left hand post (3-1, 58)
Needham forced a left sided corner on 64 but it was not allwed to be taken before both captains were spoken to by the referee following a tussle in the area between Baker and Magunda.
The Marketmen kept up the pressure and Lait had to head a Baker header behind for another flag kick on 65 which was subsequently cleared by Frances.
A Beswick freekick on 70 was headed down by Kettle at the back of the box and Clement met it well but a Needham defender blocked it’s path and prevented The Lambs notching number four.
Dye forced a corner on the right with a blocked shot against Stabana on 74 and Beswick then Kettle cleared the Lambs lines. Shaw replaced Dias on 74 and a block by Beswick called Kettle into the discussions with the referee on 77.
Sturgess took the deadball on the right wing and it took a touch out for a corner on the left and Needham kept the pressure up until Singh was able to take hold of the ball and proceedings.
Concannon found Shaw who then found Clement in a good move out of midfield and a corner on the left was the result, but Jessup took the flagkick at height to prevent substitute Gordon from reaching the ball.
Gordon was brought down in the left channel on 85 and Beswick set himself up with the deadball from 35 yards out but it took a good tackle from Shaw to deny the break of the home side over the halfway line.
Dan Morphew saw red following a second yellow card after a foul on Clement down the right on 80 and his gesticulations towards the officials did him no favours in earning him an early bath.
Clement picked his spot in added time but saw his shot come back off the post and Concannon hit the rebound inches wide, from a similar position.
James tried his luck as the seconds ticked away but cleared the target, and in the last throws of the game Kettle sliced a clearance behind for a right sided corner which came to nothing and the Lambs celebrated three points once again.
Singh, Frances, Stabana, Beswick, Kettle (c.), Magunda, Concannon, Clement, Waite (Gordon 80), Dias (Shaw 74), Lait (James R 83)
Subs: Jemson, Maphosa
YC: Kettle 43
Needham Market Team:
Jessup, Dye, Sturgess, Squire, Morphew K, Morphew D, Marsden, Heath (c.), Baker, Griffiths (Pelling 75), Mills (Ingram 59)
Subs: Kamazni, McLaughlin, Shorten
YC: Morphew D 36 + 88, Ingram 59
RC: Morphew D 88
Referee: Mr. J. Bloxham