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By GAVIN CANEY, Sports Reporter
Friday, August 17, 2012
Deadly duo Joe Jackson and Alex Vincent stole the show as Swaffham Town hammered Downham Town in Tuesday’s Thurlow Nunn League First Division West Norfolk derby.
Hat-trick hero Jackson and pint-sized Vincent, who bagged a brace, ripped Downham apart as the Pedlars enjoyed a resounding 5-0 victory. The deserved win gave the rampant hosts their first league points of the season, much to the delight of Swaffham boss Paul Hunt, after they lost Saturday’s opener 3-1 at Saffron Walden Town.
He said: “We’ve worked hard to put in performances like that and right from the word go we looked quite composed and compact when we were defending as well.
“We played with a freedom and I was really happy. Joe and Alex are two top lads who have worked to be good footballers. They’re both lads with good ability and they work hard so they deserved the goals they got. I think everyone on the night did their job, and the front two really did theirs.
“At the right times they threatened their back four both in front and behind. But I thought the midfield worked really hard too and put the bullets in there for the strikers to run on to. It’s nice to have that maturity in the midfield and I thought they settled the game down a bit when they needed to.”
Striker Jackson pounced on a rebound in the third minute to put Swaffham in front before Vincent finished off a fine move to crash home a second just before the half-hour mark.
A fine solo run from Jackson and a cute chip from Vincent made it 4-0 after the break as a depleted Downham side crumbled under a barrage of pressure. The latter put Jackson’s third on a plate after another of his pacy runs had torn a hole in Town’s backline.
Defeated assistant manager Pete Brassett pulled no punches with his after-match assessment. He said: “It’s probably the worst performance in my three years here and it happened in front of 100-odd people in a local derby.
“It hurts me, it hurts Garts (first-team boss Garth Good) and I know it hurts the lads. It’s more than fair to say the better side won. I don’t think we’ll play against a better front two all year – Jackson and Vincent ran us ragged all night. Then you’ve got the three in the middle of the park, (Mikey) Thompson, (Jack) Redhead and (Will) O’Brien, who were superb. We didn’t get close to them and didn’t stop the delivery into Jackson and Vincent.
“I’m not making excuses, but we missed seven players. We missed Birdy (Simon Bird) with food poisoning, Dale Twaite-Smith, Matty Franks, Matty Castellan and Matt Dye and there’s five that would have started. Our squad isn’t anywhere big enough to compete without such quality.”
Swaffham host Halstead Town on Saturday while a pointless Downham look to bounce back in their third game of the season at Cornard United (both 3pm).
Swaffham: Cruickshank, Weaver-Pope, Parkinson, Miller, Woolmore, O’Brien, Redhead (D Jackson 84), Thompson, Hilliard, Vincent (Eggleton 87), J Jackson (Buhlemann 88). Subs not used: Rix, Hemeter. Goals: Jackson 3, 53, 82, Vincent 27, 56.
Downham: Young, Page, Hewitt (Billham 59), Goult, Charalambous (Stannard, 14), Cross, Dickson, Hanslip, Goodbourn, Calvert, Bussens (Plumb 59). Subs not used: Sharp, Armsby.
Referee: G Bryne.