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Wittering Premiar continue winning start to the new Peterborough League season



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Wittering Premiair made it back-to-back wins as they followed up last week's opening victory with a 6-2 success at Peterborough League Division One newcomers Rippingale & Folkingham on Saturday.

Lee Croft bagged a brace for Sam Cayley's charges with Grant Tippett, Josh Watson, James Savage and Andrew Moss also on target.

It was testament to Wittering Premiair's strength in depth this season that Moss - their top goalscorer Moss for the past couple of years - had started the match on the substitutes' bench for the first-ever league meeting between these two clubs.

Grant Tippett has scored three goals in two games for Wittering. (42241847)
Grant Tippett has scored three goals in two games for Wittering. (42241847)

The match had taken 10 minutes to settle down before Wittering began to turn the screw.

Ever-present skipper Grant Tippett received a pass from Ashley Middleton who turned the home left-back inside out.

Tippett then despatched the ball into the home net from 18 yards out to continue his rich vein of early season scoring with three goals in two games.

Although the hard pitch and the wind didn't help, the quality of football dropped and it turned into a cagey first half.

Wittering came in at half-time 1-0 up after a first period that saw keeper-sweeper Paul Greenhalgh mop up and deal with everything leaving the outfield confident in pressing high.

Rippingale pressed forward in numbers at the start of the second half with the next goal important to both sides.

The Wittering Premiair press led by Steve Snelling then reaped its rewards as the ball was laid off to Tippett who drove forward and unselfishly squared to Croft who smashed the finish home to make it 2-0.

Up to this point Wittering Premiair had been economical in every area of the pitch before an enforced change saw Luke Smith having to drop deeper into the back three.

This improved the quality of the distribution out from the back and Wittering soon added a third goal.

Croft's cleanly-struck free-kick was parried after bouncing just in front of the Rippingale goalkeeper and Watson pounced to net the rebound.

Wittering Premiair seemed to be in cruise control until Rippingale took a corner and, with a deflected clearance, the ball fell perfectly for the home midfielder to finish in a one-on-one with Greenhalgh.

The goal changed the complexion of the game with the Rippingale players having their tails up.

The match did settle again though as Wittering Premiair turned the balance back in their favour and restored the three-goal advantage when Croft received the ball from Simon Farrow after some great work down the left which started from Savage.

Once the ball was squared to Croft he drove forward another 20 yards and finished sublimely to make it 4-1.

Watson then went off injured and was replaced by Moss who had an immediate impact by converting within 40 seconds of his introduction after some good hold-up play and lay-off from Croft.

The game became stretched and the next goal went to Rippingale with Wittering Premiair back-pedalling.

The initial shot was saved well by Greenhalgh, only for the Rippingale striker to win the race to the rebound and slot home.

Wittering Premiair completed the scoring with a couple of minutes remaining as Moss' corner into the six-yard box was converted by an amazing overhead kick from towering defender Savage.

Manager Cayley said: "After last weekend's game against Tydd we made a couple of forced changes because of injury which saw us change our shape slightly.

"When we changed this just before half time we looked a lot more comfortable and started to play some good football in spells and looked a lot more dangerous going forward.

"The players we have added from last season - Simon Farrow and Jack Travers - have started to settle and show what they are about.

"They also know the way we want to play and it shows we now have the strength and depth which we haven’t had in previous seasons.

"Fair play to Rippingale though as they are a decent side who want to play football the right way and have a decent set-up.

"We now move on to another tough game on Saturday against NECI where we know we need to be at it from the start.

"Overall it has been positive start to the season which we need to continue as there are some tough teams in this league and we can’t afford to slip up."

Wittering Premiair Reserves shared the spoils with Division Two newcomers Deeping Rangers Reserves on Saturday.

Jack Driscoll netted the Wittering Premiair goal with Ben Leisner replying for Rangers.

The A team continued their solid start with a second successive victory after beating Hampton Reserves 7-3 in Division Three.

Sam Eaton and Tom Smith both scored twice for Wittering Premiair with Joe Dobson, Daniel Hook and Mark Watson their other marksmen.

The B team went down to a 6-0 home reversal against Thorpe Wood Rangers Reserves in Division Five.



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