‘Naive’ Wisbech Town limp to defeat at Wroxham
Ridgeons Premier Division: Wroxham 3 Wisbech Town 1
WISBECH Town boss Steve Appleby accused the Fenmen of naivety after today’s Ridgeons Premier Division defeat against Wroxham at Trafford Park.
Appleby’s men failed to build on an impressive midweek League Cup win at table-topping Dereham after conceding twice from set pieces in each half.
Damian Hilton headed Wroxham in front on 25 minutes before Gavin Lemmon slotted another well-worked free kick on 69 minutes.
Simon Flanz grabbed Wisbech a lifeline a minute later from the penalty spot but Paul Cook sealed victory with a superb volley from just inside the box.
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“I think we have been naive today and we have under-achieved, big style,” said Appleby, whose side will face Wroxham again in the FA Vase in two weeks time.
“We have let ourselves down and I think Wroxham wanted it more than us - that was the difference first half. We didn’t do anything. We didn’t turn Wroxham round and it was a scrappy game in my eyes. I was just pleased it was only one at half time.
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“We had a go at them and they were a lot brighter, we started to get loads more of the ball. I was confident of getting back into it, but then we went to sleep at a free kick and they go two up.
“I thought we would kick on after the penalty, but we never did. I’ve just said to the lads I think we are lacking consistency at the minute. We have turned Leiston and Dereham over twice and we are more than a match for anybody.
“I know Wroxham are a good side and coming away to the top two or three is difficult but our performance was nowhere near where it could be and we didn’t give ourselves a fighting chance. I thought they were worthy winners.”
Appleby remains convinced Wisbech can finish in the top six. “We have some good lads here and we are capable of going on a run,” he said.
“Unfortunately that has to be a run of wins because we have dropped too many points. We have a lot to play for. Top six is what we are trying to aim for and I think that is quite easily achievable. But dropping points here and a few draws recently makes it harder.”
Wroxham wide player Owen Paynter’s early cut back created the first real chance for Ross Durrant but the youngster lifted over 12 yards out on 17 minutes.
Wisbech skipper Anthony Reeve needed to be alert to divert Durrant’s flick behind but the hosts broke the deadlock from the corner - Hilton stooping to head Graham Challen’s flick at the far post.
Scott Howie foiled Stacy Cartwright moments later with the Fenmen probing for an instant riposte. Josh Carus stabbed a half chance over with Wroxham a constant threat at set pieces.
Gary Gilmore’s sweet volley from Jack Marsden’s corner flew just over Wisbech keeper Lea Jordan’s bar in the closing stages of a tight first half.
Challen’s header skimmed Wisbech substitute Paul Cousins and flew wide from Marsden’s free kick on the restart.
Darren Jimson’s tame strike rolled through to Howie after the powerful midfielder had worked a useful opening 16 yards out.
Carus’ last ditch lunge put Cartwright off on 54 minutes with a static Wroxham backline caught by a ball over the top.
Fenmen midfielder Paul Jones rifled off target from long range with the visitors now pinning Wroxham back.
Ross Durrant’s angled strike was beaten away on a sharp Wroxham counter before Jordan parried Gavin Lemmon’s free kick.
Lemmon doubled the lead on 69 minutes from an acute angle after Wisbech’s defence switched off at Marsden’s quickly-taken free kick tight to the byline.
Flanz reduced the arrears with a cool penalty but Cook’s sublime volley sealed victory for the Ridegons Premier title contenders.
Wroxham: Howie, Atkins, Marsden, Challen, Carus, Daniels (Bruel 82), Durrant, Gilmore, Hilton, Boswell (Lemmon 56), Paynter (Cook 68). Sub (not used): George.
Goals: Hilton (25), Lemmon (69), Cook (75)
Wisbech: Jordan, Flanz, Johnson, Fairweather (Cousins 45), Reeve, Turner, Jones, Thompson, Jimson (Furnell 72), Stevens, Cartwright (Gale 56). Sub (not used): Dear.
Goal: Flanz (70)
Referee: S Artis.