It’s a thriller – and Jackson’s the star man for Norwich United
- Credit: Copyright: Archant 2017
Liam Jackson fired four goals to help Norwich United to victory in a seven-goal thriller at Plantation Park – despite two injury time goals from third-placed Canvey Island.
After nine league games without victory, Jackson's goals, ably assisted on every occasion by Adam Hipperson, gave the hosts a four-goal lead by the 63rd minute.
The Gulls immediately hit back with a penalty but it wasn't until injury time that tensions rose as George Sykes netted twice before referee Matthew Morrison blew the final whistle, much to the relief of the Planters' faithful.
The Planters opened the scoring in the 14th minute, Hipperson outpacing the defender down the right before squaring for Jackson to squeeze the ball under ex-Lowestoft goalkeeper Ashlee Jones.
Sykes headed wide at the far post and Sam Watts perfectly illustrated the home side's defending with a block to deny Ryan Charles as the visitors pressed hard. But it was the Planters who scored next, in the 28th minute, as Sam Applegate released Hipperson down the left and his shot was fumbled by Jones and Jackson pounced to net from close range.
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Jackson duly completed his first hat-trick for the club just 65 seconds after the break, heading home Hipperson's excellent cross from the left byline.
The Planters seemed to have wrapped the game up 27 minutes from time when they added another goal, Hipperson squaring from the right for Jackson to side-foot home his fourth.
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But the referee awarded the Gulls a lifeline for a foul on Charles and Mitchell Gilbey netted from the spot. The Gulls eventually breached the home defence's impressive, tireless resilience when Sykes scored in the second minute of injury time. Within a minute Sykes reduced the arrears to one, but one final ball into the box was dealt with and the Planters survived.
Norwich United: Wilton, Probert, Henery (Mackie 78), Wones, Eastaugh, Watts, Applegate, Pollock, Jones, Jackson (Stewart 82), Hipperson (Oyeniran 87).
Canvey: Jones, Pitty, Dumas, Norman (Walker 61), Sobers, Sheehan, Melaugh (Nesbitt 74), Collins, Sykes, Gilbey, Charles. Subs not used: Warren, Bourne.
Ref: Matthew Morrison. Att: 119.