Great Wakering Rovers - League (Away)

Result: Great Wakering Rovers 2 - 0 Felixstowe & Walton Utd
Date: 18th August 2018
Time: 15:00
Match Type: Bostik North
Attendance: 108


Great Wakering Rovers 2 - 0 Felixstowe & Walton Utd

Saturday 18th August 2018

Attendance 108

Photos Available Here

If anybody who witnessed the impressive 3-1 victory over Bury Town FC on the opening day of the season thought the trip to Great Wakering would be easy, they were soon brought down to earth with a bump. Saturday’s hosts had struggled in their opening fixture away to Romford with a 3-0 defeat and this had led boss Garry Kimble to complain about a lack of match fitness in the Rovers squad. They must have worked hard during the week because from the very start they closed The Seasiders down, chased and harried and were lively in all quarters.

Unfortunately, it took only 11minutes before Stephen Butterworth netted for Rovers from close range. It’s true that Felixstowe were missing both Jack Ainsley, who was suspended, and Joe Bloomfield, recovering from an infection, but this was always going to be a bad day at the office.

Quick out of the traps, Rovers challenged every ball, pressed consistently and disrupted the flow of play. They pounced on mistakes we made and, as a consequence, piled on yet more pressure. This resulted in the home side extending their lead after 22 minutes when Billy Johnson converted with a very impressive effort from the edge of the box.

After the game, Joint Manager Ian Watson admitted, “Today, we simply weren’t at the races…..we were missing a couple of players but we just didn’t have the right attitude.” That said, Jordy Matthews was, as usual, tenacious in midfield.At times the Seasiders moved the ball about with style, but constant closing down from the hosts was the visitors’ undoing.

Reflecting on this, Ian Watson said, “We are going to have to accept that teams in the Bostik North offer a physical presence and we’ll have to mix it up with how we respond.”  It’s clear life will be more difficult in this league.

The second half was altogether more satisfactory even though there was no improvement in the scoreline.  Rhys Barber came close to doubling his tally for the season, clipping the bar at one stage, but the sense among the travelling fans was that we weren’t likely to turn the game around. All three substitutes were used late in the game, with Ian Watson commenting, “I was happy with the lads from the bench: Sam Ford, Ben Clarke and Darcy De’ath.” Darcy re-signed for Felixstowe late on Friday.

More than a few people at the game felt that the defeat might just possibly be a blessing in disguise.  If anyone was under the illusion that life would be straightforward in this league, they are now fully aware that this is definitely not the case. It might be worth reflecting on the fact that both newly promoted Coggeshall and 2016/17’s Thurlow Nunn Champions Mildenhall have only managed to secure one point each with The Seedgrowers going down at Dereham who themselves lost the season opener 6-0 at Aveley. This might just be a bumpy ride this season.

 Next up for Felixstowe & Walton is Walthamstow at home in the FA Cup on Saturday. This will provide an opportunity for the Seasiders to make amends and get things back on track. Safe passage to the First Qualifying round at the weekend would bring with it financial reward as well as a timely confidence boost before Bank Holiday Monday’s 3 pm outing away to Dereham in Norfolk. No doubt there will be another impressive away following backing Kev and Watty’s troops.

 Footnote: Rhys Henry came off on 61 minutes with a sore right ankle. Doesn’t appear to be serious.


Felixstowe & Walton   Gt. Wakering
Spuring 1 Brown
Ainsley. S 2 Ring
Clarke. E 3 Woodhouse
Boardley (12) 81 mins 4 Pethers
Barber 5 Payne
Davis 6 Russell
Francis (14) 73mins 7 Makendi (17) 90 mins
Kerridge 8 Harris
Powell 9 Thomas
Henry (15) 61 mins 10 Johnson [goal] 22 mins
Matthews 11 Butterworth [goal] 11mins (16) 63 mins
De'ath 12 Dewberry
Clarke.B 14 Hurford
Ford 15 Renew
Hammond 16 Wiggins
  17 Cox