Henderson at the double for Lowestoft Town
06:00 30 December 2013
Lowestoft Town have played a lot better than their performance against Canvey Island and lost this season.
For 45 minutes the Blues simply weren’t in the match as the Gulls dominated for long spells and appeared intent on carving open an uncharacteristically charitable home defence at will.
Canvey striker Moses Adebola in particular looked hell-bent on proving the Blues haven’t got the joint best defensive record in the league.
It seemed a matter of time before Canvey would put an injury-hit Lowestoft side out of their misery in the second half after Spencer Bellotti had given them a deserved lead.
But what the Trawlerboys lacked in numbers they more than made up for in durability and with Chris Henderson in their midst they possess a match-winner capable of striking at any time at this level.
The former Bury man’s first was down to a touch of fortune as Rob Bartley slipped in possession allowing Rossi Jarvis to steal the ball away from the big defender. However, from then on the move showed the kind of quality that you would expect a promotion-chasing outfit to possess.
Jarvis’ perfectly-weighted pass allowed Henderson to take a touch away from the chasing defenders before sliding the ball home with the kind of aplomb any striker would be proud of.
The turnaround was complete a minute later when Henderson showed the predatory instinct many feared would be lacking due to Jake Reed’s absence through an ankle injury.
In a crowded penalty area Henderson somehow found a yard of space and deftly flicked home Jack Ainsley’s free-kick to complete a perfect Christmas schedule for the Trawlerboys following wins over Dulwich Hamlet and Leiston.
“When he’s (Henderson) at it he knows how good he can be,” said Fleming after watching Henderson take his personal tally to five goals for the season. “He’s had a few knocks and a bit of off-the-field stuff which has affected him but when he’s fully on it he’s a very good player.
“He’s one of those players that doesn’t always need the right service. He’s got so much pace and he’s got a trick so that he can create something for himself.”
Victory moved the Blues to within three points of those all-important play-off places and the fact this had been achieved on the back of what had been an, at best, average performance made it even sweeter for Fleming.
“In recent times that’s what we’ve lacked – when we’ve not been at our best we’ve not always picked up the results,” he added. “From that point of view it’s very pleasing. I think they’re a great bunch of lads in there at the moment. They are listening and doing the things they are told and I can’t speak highly enough of them at the moment.
“We’ve had the same lads playing with knocks but they should be very proud of themselves.”