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Wednesday 26th March 2014 ko 19.45

Eastern Counties League Division One

DEBENHAM LEISURE CENTRE 0

TEAM BURY 1 (Thompson 72)

Att 63

Entry £5

Programme 50p

Raffle £1

Tea £1

Burger £1.50

I suppose the first point to make is that this Suffolk village near Bury St Edmunds has absolutely nothing to be with the department store of the same name! Apparently the pronunciation is different, the village sounds more like Dee- ben- am, but that could be local inflection! The village takes its name from the River Deben who runs through the village in what is claimed to be Britain’s third longest ford, eventually reaching its estuary at Felixstowe Ferry with two Martello Towers marking the mouth.

On Saturday I watched a team called Wherrymen, and here was another first, a team called Leisure Centre! Its nothing if not logical, the club does play at the local leisure centre after all!  You enter the Maitlands Football Ground via the bar, which also features an Indian takeaway! The food theme extends to the grassed area behind the stand where a barbecue was in full swing, and the area surrounding it proved to be an excellent place for the support to meet and chat. It was a convivial evening, not least because the fixture managed to attract the hoppers, including one, Pete from Japan!

For Step 6 football which was achieved in 2005, a stand was erected, or was that delivered (?) and the ground reflects the club’s needs at the current time. There’s plenty of room to expand should the need arise with another two pitches beyond the far touchline, and a grassed bank behind the right-hand goal.

In fact the only issue any of us had with the game was that for that vast majority of it, a nil-nil draw looked inevitable! Debenham had most of the play, but time after time the ball was played through promisingly, only for the forwards to find a way of failing to apply the coup de gras! Eventually Team Bury made them pay for their profligacy. A free kick was flighted into the box and there was centre half Ashley Thompson to miss-head the ball up in the air from fully 25 yards out. The trajectory completely threw Sam Chilvers in the home goal, and the ball looped over his head and into the net, to win the game for the visitors.

The defeat leaves the Hornets 11th comfortably mid-table, but the aim is for FA Cup and Vase football for next season, and for that 10th place needs to be secured. With 7 games left, the club has everything still to play for.

We departed for our various points around the compass, me due West. and Pete, in few days, a lot further due East! I wonder if the club knew they had probably their furthest travelled patron…..