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Non-league round-up: AFC Sudbury and Thetford Town continue their title and promotion pushes in the Isthmian League and Thurlow Nunn League with late winners





AFC Sudbury preserved their four-point lead at the top of the Pitching In Isthmian League North Division with a comeback 2-1 win at home to Wroxham on Saturday.

The title and promotion-chasing Yellows welcomed back 30-goal striker Nnamdi Nwachuku from holiday and he grabbed the winner from the spot in the 82nd minute at the MEL Group Stadium.

Rick Andrews' table toppers trailed at half-time to their Norfolk visitors after Shaun Taylor opened the scoring on 36 minutes, before Joshua Pollard equalised three minutes after the break.

AFC Sudbury celebrate Nnamdi Nwachuku's late winner Picture: Mecha Morton
AFC Sudbury celebrate Nnamdi Nwachuku's late winner Picture: Mecha Morton

And in the final minutes Nwachuku stepped up to convert a penalty for his 31st goal of the campaign which clinched a ninth win in a row for Sudbury.

It was also a late show for Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division leaders Thetford Town, who came from a goal behind to win 2-1 at bottom side Haverhill Rovers.

The clash between top and bottom in the Premier Division had been moved to Haverhill Borough's 3G surface, due to a frozen grass pitch at the JR Crane Services Hub, The New Croft.

Nnamdi Nwachuku made his return for Sudbury at the weekend Picture: Mecha Morton
Nnamdi Nwachuku made his return for Sudbury at the weekend Picture: Mecha Morton

Marc Benterman's relegation-threatened hosts looked on course for a vital three points at the other end of the table when Oli Bell fired home after 77 minutes.

But their lead lasted for just two minutes as the league's leading goalscorer Dan Gilchrist got Thetford back on level terms with his 26th goal of the season.

And in added time the visitors grabbed all three points when Elliot Smith found the target to move his side now 14 points clear at the top of the Premier Division, while Rovers remain 12 points adrift of safety at the other end of the table.

Thetford Town celebrate their winning goal at Haverhill Rovers Picture: Mark Westley
Thetford Town celebrate their winning goal at Haverhill Rovers Picture: Mark Westley

Elsewhere in the Premier Division, Kirkley & Pakefield let a half-time lead slip to lose 2-1 at home to Sheringham.

Connor Swan put the Royals in front during the first half, before Owen Lane and Ryan Haylett replied for the visitors in a game which saw the hosts finish with 10 men after Alex Blowers was shown a straight red card.

The cold weather resulted in a number of postponed games during the weekend, with Framlingham Town making the most of their title rivals Heacham not playing to move back to the top of the First Division North.

Haverhill's Ryan Swallow and Thetford's Sam Bond battle for possession Picture: Mark Westley
Haverhill's Ryan Swallow and Thetford's Sam Bond battle for possession Picture: Mark Westley

The Castlemen were in fine form as they cruised to a 5-1 victory at Norwich CBS, with goals coming from Niki Shopov (two), Josh Lucraft, Max Willett and Joe Berry.

The win moves Fram back to the top of the table and two points clear of Heacham with both sides having now played the same number of games.

Elsewhere in the First Division North, Diss Town bounced back to winning ways with an impressive 3-0 victory away at Holland.

Jamie Tedaldi made his debut in goal for Haverhill Rovers on Saturday Picture: Mark Westley
Jamie Tedaldi made his debut in goal for Haverhill Rovers on Saturday Picture: Mark Westley

Spencer Cawcutt, Rio Perry and James Sillet all found the target for the Tangerines, who climbed up to 12th and closed the gap on the play-off spots to nine points.

Haverhill Borough picked up their first win of 2023 with a 1-0 triumph at Leiston Reserves, thanks to a Callum Stone strike, and saw out the game with 10 men after Louie Bampton was shown a second yellow card.

Jason Cook recorded his first win as Debenham LC boss after seeing his side beat Great Yarmouth 2-0 at the Wellesley.

Midweek fixtures (7.45pm unless stated)

Tuesday, January 24

Pitching In Isthmian League North Division

Brentwood Town v Lowestoft Town

Stowmarket Town v AFC Sudbury

Thurlow Nunn League Premier Division

Walsham-le-Willows v Lakenheath

Ashtons Legal Norfolk Senior Cup

Thetford Town v Blofield

Norwich United v Long Stratton

Peter Butcher Trophy

Halstead Town v Romford

Thurlow Nunn League First Division North

Cornard United v Needham Market Under-23s