Newmarket Ladies 1’s v’s Bourne Ladies 1’s: 2-0 win to Bourne
The final fixture of the season for Newmarket Ladies first team was an occasion that would shape their league future as the result determined whether they or their opposition – Bourne would be relegated from the East Division Two League.
With a slight change in formation Town were looking a little hesitant to begin with but were hoping to get some early goals to settle the nerves. The game started sprightly and both teams were keen to attack. The umpires who were promoting advantage play focused on fouls in the D and awarded a questionable penalty flick to Bourne. An outstanding save from Sue Bullimore brought relief to the Newmarket team camp. This spurred Town on and they began to gel more through midfield.
Working hard out wide Tracy Cockerill took on the play and found Claire McDonnell. With a shimmy in the D she lost her marker – her shot narrowly missing goal. This was to be Newmarket’s main chance of the half and then the luck swung Bourne’s way. A string of short corners were to follow for the opposition but due to lightning defending from Newmarket, Bourne were unable to get any promising shots away.
With the pressure building, the second half looked even shakier for both teams than the first. With 35 minutes left to ensure their league survival every player had to display maximum concentration and effort. Bourne were the first to make an impact and through a pelting shot took a 1-0 lead. The luck seemed against Newmarket as every decision and 50/50 ball seemed to go Bourne’s way.
Still with all to play for Newmarket galvanised their efforts. Great work from Jenny Richards and Rebecca Swift gave Town the propulsion towards goal that created disarray in the Bourne defence. It was now Newmarket’s chance to capitalise from a flurry of short corners but they were unable to convert.
With a quick break, Town were left stranded and despite the final effort being cut out by the defence another penalty flick was awarded to Bourne. This time the shot was unstoppable taking the score to 2-0. Hopes were fading fast and time running out for a couple of glory goals but Newmarket continued to battle right up until the final whistle.
Looking back on a season of highs and lows Newmarket were incredibly unfortunate not to remain in the East league but look to gain strength from their experiences and strive to reach the same level again.