Eastern Counties: Saffron Walden Tn 1 Haverhill Rovers 0
PUBLISHED: 14:02 26 December 2017 | UPDATED: 14:02 26 December 2017
Saffron Walden earned the Boxing Day bragging rights thanks to a second-half goal from substitute Dan Trendal.
Playing in front of 420 at Catons Lane, in a mid-day kick-off, the hosts had a good chance early on when a free-kick was floated into the box and found Ryan Fleming unmarked, but he put his effort wide.
Joseph Murphy volleyed another chance past the post for the hosts, as they continued to pose the early threat, before Connor Molloy’s header forced a good save from Charlie Turner and the loose ball was scrambled clear.
The visitors should have opened the scoring from their first chance of note when a deep cross to the far post caused panic, but Neil O’Sullivan produced an excellent save to deny Haverhill’s close-range attempt and keep the scoreline blank at the break.
Walden went close from a corner early in the second half and Spike Bell saw his delivery tipped over by Turner, but Haverhill’s Rory Jebb saw his effort from a free-kick cleared off the line by a home defender.
Dan Trendal lobbed wide when through with only the keeper to beat after replacing Joe Maybanks, but the visitors then started to get on top midway through the half.
And Walden needed an outstanding save from O’Sullivan to deny Jubb’s shot on the turn at point-blank range when a cross into the box was not properly dealt with.
The home side got their noses in front soon after, though, when a ball forward found Trendal and he deftly lifted the ball over Turner and into the net this time to huge cheers from the Walden faithful.
Trendal had claims for a penalty turned down, before Mitch Burr fired wide at the other end from the edge of the box and fellow substitute Rafa Wozniak dragged a late chance past the post.
Saffron Walden: O’Sullivan, Bell, Ledwith, Molloy, Moody, Fleming, Emsden (Simon-Parsons), Murphy, Maybanks (Trendal), Portway, Crane. Unused subs: Skeggs, Lakin, Naylor.