Fakenham Town set for a Thurlow Nunn Premier Division cracker

Ashley Jarvis, behind, gets the last touch ahead of Josh Youngs, front, to give The Ghosts the lead

Ashley Jarvis, behind, gets the last touch ahead of Josh Youngs, front, to give The Ghosts the lead on Saturday. Picture: TONY MILES - Credit: Archant

They have already picked up outstanding results against several of the Thurlow Nunn Premier Division’s title challengers – now Fakenham Town are looking to do it again when they face the odds-on favourites, writes Gareth Davis.

Norwich United head to Clipbush Park on Saturday (3pm) having won 16 of their 18 fixtures to open up a three-point lead at the summit.

Close behind them are Godmanchester Rovers, where the Ghosts won back in October to spark an unbeaten run that also included a draw at Newmarket Town – currently fourth in the table – and Hadleigh United, who are fifth but won the title last season.

Godmanchester and Newmarket were both second when they took on Wayne Anderson’s men and the manager says those results give his side encouragement as they aim to bring 2014 to a close on a high note.

He said: “I know Norwich’s manager, Damian Hilton, and I’m sure he will be happy with some of the results we have got against the sides around them so far this season. Those results have shown what we can do when we are at our best and we know we are capable of competing with the leading sides in the division.

“When we have played the top teams we have only not performed well once, when we lost to Godmanchester at home [4-0 after the game was 0-0 at half-time].

“When we went to Godmanchester, Hadleigh and Newmarket we were the underdogs, as we will be on Saturday, and we showed in those games how dangerous we can be so we are looking forward to the Norwich game.”

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Fakenham have already played Norwich once this season, losing 1-0 at Plantation Park in the fourth round of the Norfolk Senior Cup at the end of November. They prepared for the visit of the leaders by training on Tuesday evening having drawn 1-1 at home to Ely City last Saturday.

Ashley Jarvis’s fifth goal of the season put them in front on the half-hour but the visitors equalised 10 minutes later through Josh Sewell’s scrambled effort and despite both sides having good chances, neither could get the crucial breakthrough. Jarvis led the line with Robbie Harris having joined the Ghosts’ injury list – the nine-goal leading scorer broke a hand in training prior to the Ely game and is set to be out for a few weeks.

Still sidelined are Matty Dye (ankle) and Kyle Plumb (foot) but both are getting closer to fitness with Anderson hoping to welcome them back to the squad in the near future. Lee Day remains away while the Ghosts will also assess midfielder Matty Franks, who went off at half-time against Ely with a groin problem.

Fakenham’s reserves finish their 2014 fixtures on Saturday with a derby at Downham Town Reserves (2pm) in Division Three of the Anglian Combination.

Last Saturday they drew 1-1 away to Easton with Kristian Jones scoring their goal.