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Haverhill face their ‘biggest game’ of the season

Elaine Ward (right) in action during Haverhill II's 3-2 win over Newmarket II on October 4.
Elaine Ward (right) in action during Haverhill II's 3-2 win over Newmarket II on October 4.

Haverhill second XI faces what their skipper says is their biggest match of the season as they look to preserve their remarkable run.

The team tops the East League Division 4 NW (S) with 13 wins out of 13 and have not even conceded a goal since a 3-2 win at home to Newmarket II way back on October 4.

That ten match run of clean sheets comes under threat on Saturday (1pm) when the two teams meet once again at Newmarket Leisure Centre, and a victory for the hosts would see them close the gap between themselves and Haverhill II to just two points.

Haverhill II skipper, Nicole Bailey, outlined the importance of the match, saying: “It is the biggest one of the season. I sent a message round to the team saying ‘we need you, we must win.’

“It is our biggest game really because we have done so well, we have got to this point and I don’t want to break the record.

“I don’t want to get beaten. If they do beat us we will still stay top of the table but it means they will close the gap on us.

“They have done better as the season has gone on so hopefully we will keep them out.”

The team should be at full strength, with only the availability of one defender in any doubt, said Bailey.

They are also boosted by the inclusion of Vicky Steed and Elaine Ward, who between them have contributed a huge number of the 73 goals they have recorded in their 13 games to date.

Their player of the season for the last two years, ‘keeper Lisa Smith, is also available, something that is not always the case.

In that run they have only conceded three goals - two of them against Saturday’s opponents - and of all 120 teams in the East League are one of just two to still have a 100 per cent winning record.

The first team meanwhile, sit slap-bang in the middle of Division 3 NW (S) after their 3-1 defeat at home to second-placed Cambridge South last Saturday.

The result could have been different had Haverhill not missed two penalty strokes with the score at 2-0 in the second half.

Mandy Williamson did reduce the arrears, but Cambridge South added a third goal to seal the three points.

On Saturday they take on bottom side Cambridge Nomads II, who only have one point from 12 games, at the leisure centre (3.30pm).