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Lowestoft Town
Canvey Island
Sat 28 Dec 15:00 - The Ryman Football League - Premier Division Full time Attendance 498

Lowestoft Town 2 Canvey Island 1

Lowestoft Town play their 'get out of jail' card with a quick double by Henderson, to come from behind and beat an unlucky Canvey Island 2-1.

Att 498

Lowestoft Town: Jones, Williams, Gleeson, Gaughran, Stuart Ainsley (Smith 75 mins), Jack Ainsley, Jarvis, Okay, Eagle, Osei (Frew 61 mins), Henderson
Subs; Smith, Frew, Bailey, Haizel, Jessup

Canvey Island: Vickers, Brian-Edwards, Dumas, Game, Bartley (Alaile 88 mins), Jones, Curran (Bellotti 37 mins), Sellears, Adebola, Hallett, Chatting
Subs; Bellotti, Humphrey, Alaile, Bawcutt, Sands

Lowestoft Town play their 'get out of jail' card with a quick double by Henderson, to come from behind and beat an unlucky Canvey Island 2-1.

After turning his ankle against Leiston, Reed was replaced in the starting line-up by Gleeson. Gleeson slotted in alongside Gaughran, while Williams moved to right back, Jack Ainsley to right midfield and Henderson up top.

The game got off to a shaky start by Lowestoft with Canvey knocking it around on the deck confidently and seeing an early sight of goal with Curran thrashing an effort across goal and past the far post. In the tenth minute Curran was involved again, this time cracking a great shot in from distance and even though Jones saved it well, he couldn't keep hold of the fierce effort but with the ball looking like being latched onto by Canvey, Lowestoft managed to clear their lines through Williams.
Canvey had made a very solid start to the match and the usual resolute and solid looking Lowestoft defence was looking totally shaken and flustered by the Canvey forward line of Adebola and Hallett.
Lowestoft did manage to carve out an opportunity against the run of play just before the twenty minute mark with Osei stealing the ball off Canvey defender Jones and finding Henderson, who in turn slide the ball to Eagle but his strike didn't have enough on it and Vickers saved.
Lowestoft were starting to look better when coming forward with Osei and Henderson both finding some space but at the back the Lowestoft rearguard were still looking somewhat shaken and were being tested by some good deliveries by the away side.
A ball over the top by Okay picked out Henderson but with him looking like being in on goal, Jones made a great last-ditch tackle to keep the Canvey goal intact. The rejuvenated Henderson was at it again moments later with Jack Ainsley playing it into his feet in the box but with him spinning to shoot, he didn't get enough power on his effort to test Vickers.
Lowestoft were going missing in midfield and were clearly struggling to deal with the quick feet of Adebola and the strong hold-up play off Hallett but as the thirty minute mark was entered the game started to go a little flat.
Strong claims for a Lowestoft penalty were turned away just after the half hour mark, when Henderson was found in the box and clearly shoved to the ground by Jones but referee Burridge waved away the claims, much to the amazement of many.
Canvey were forced into their first change of the day with Curran struggling and Bellotti being introduced and as half time approached an off-the-ball incident resulted in a melee within the Lowestoft area. As a Lowestoft corner was sent in, Canvey right back Brian-Edwards went down in the area clutching his face after a clash with Williams but once the referee had calmed tempers down he booked both players. Literally moments later the impressive Adebola showed some great work down the right wing and with him sending a peach of a cross to Hallett at the far post, he headed back across goal to Bellotti, who had the simplest of tasks to head home right in front of Jones and send Canvey 1-0 up (42 mins).
Just before the half time whistle sounded, Sellears and Adebola combined well with Sellears zipping a ball across the Lowestoft box, raising the question as to whether the separation of Williams and Gaughran in central defence had disrupted things for Lowestoft.

The second half started with an early scramble in the Lowestoft box and moments later Williams was counting himself lucky to still be on the pitch, following a late tackle on Sellears which looked like a certain second booking and an early bath but the referee decided to just dish out a final warning.
Up the other end Okay picked out Henderson in the box but his fluffed attempt summed up the sort of day that it was becoming for Lowestoft.
Canvey were continuing to work hard and were making it very difficult for Lowestoft to get into their stride. Lowestoft were now letting some sloppy passes go astray and were also starting to show the physical effects of having slogged away on a heavy pitch on Boxing Day.
The ever dangerous Adebola sliced through the Lowestoft defence with ease, forcing Jones to save but with him only able to push the ball into the path of Bellotti, from a yard out a second Canvey goal looked odds on but astonishingly Bellotti totally messed it up and Lowestoft survived.
Lowestoft were looking a little blunt in attack but a Jarvis free-kick clipping the bar gave them hope of snatching something. Frew was introduced for Osei from the bench for Lowestoft, as the blues looked to try and salvage something from what was looking like a certain and unarguable defeat.
Whenever Lowestoft had an opportunity in front of goal the efforts lacked any real conviction to them and with Henderson doing well to work an effort with three defenders around him, that was the case again with his effort not fully testing the Canvey keeper Vickers.
It was looking like an uphill task for Lowestoft and their frustrations were clear to see as Stuart Ainsley picked up a booking with twenty minutes of the match remaining.
The first real sign of conviction from Lowestoft came when Williams charged down the right flank and pulled the ball back to Jack Ainsley to shoot from the edge of the box, forcing Vickers to turn his effort round the post.
It really was looking like being a day in which Lowestoft would end the match empty handed, until Jarvis slipped a sweet pass into Henderson and he finished with aplomb across the goal and into the net to unexpectedly draw things level at 1-1 (71 mins). The Lowestoft faithful barely had time to digest the equaliser, before Henderson sent the home crowd wild and drove a dagger into the side of a dejected Canvey Island side. A foul on Henderson out on the left resulted in a free-kick that Jack Ainsley sent into the box and with Henderson stealing in on the defence, he headed home for his second and to turn the match on its head, putting Lowestoft 2-1 ahead (72 mins).
Smith was introduced for a fired up Stuart Ainsley as fifteen minutes remained.
To their credit, Canvey must of been hurting after such a bizarre turnaround but they kept playing and kept causing Lowestoft issues. Adebola showed great work again as Canvey spilled forward and with Chatting being found at the far post from the right, his half volley flew wide, taking a slight deflection for a corner on its way. From the resulting corner the ball appeared to have dropped favourably for Canvey but Okay showed great determination and bravery to put his body on the line and made a tremendous clearance, getting himself temporarily hurt in the process.
As the final ten minutes were entered the ever supportive vocals rang out from the stands to help see the blues over the finish line.
Canvey made a late change but as stoppage time arrived all they could do was give away fouls in frustration at somehow finding themselves behind, when looking certain for all the points.
An Eagle chance at the death was controlled well and fractionally rolled past the far post but the final whistle sounded and Lowestoft had dug out an unlikely three points to make it three wins from three over the festive period.

Canvey Island will without doubt be hurting after that and they deserve credit for not only coming and making it difficult for Lowestoft but also playing some good football which tested a usually solid Lowestoft defence. They say you make your own luck and Lowestoft certainly had Lady Luck on their side today but a win is a win and the determination shown in the final part of the game, when legs must have been heavy, just shows the 'never give up' attitudes of the Lowestoft players.

It was looking like being a tricky Man of the Match decision for all of the wrong reasons but with him looking like getting fully back to the player we love and know, two goal hero Chris Henderson was my Man of the Match.

Lowestoft won't now be in action until Saturday when they make the long trip to Bognor Regis Town. The scheduled New Years Day match against AFC Hornchurch was brought forward earlier in the season when both teams had a spare Saturday cup weekend. So the players will have a well earned break to spend New Year with their families.

Lowestoft Town Football club would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year and look forward to seeing you all at the Crown Meadow or on travels in 2014.

Terry Bullen

Train with the Best - Win a training session with the England 6-a-side squad

Chris Henderson

Player of the Match

Chris Henderson

Team selection

Team selection has not been published for this fixture yet.

League round up

League table

# Team Pl Pts
1. Wealdstone 46 96
2. Kingstonian 46 85
3. Bognor Regis Town 46 85
4. Lowestoft Town 46 84
5. AFC Hornchurch 46 83
6. Dulwich Hamlet 46 82
7. Maidstone United 46 81


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