Birthday boy Brine tastes sweet glory

EAST MEN'S LEAGUE: Matthew Brine celebrated his birthday by bagging all four goals as Norwich City II won 4-2 at home to Cambridge City III in Division 2NE.

Brine swept home the opener following a short corner and added his second shortly afterwards, although Cambridge pulled one back before half-time.

The visitors then equalised after the break, but Brine was on hand to complete his hat-trick and he added his fourth 10 minutes from time. He could even have had a fifth late on, but, with the keeper beaten, he was denied by a stunning, waist-high goal-line clearance from a defender.

Also in 2NE, Dereham II's youngsters shone in a 5-0 victory over Rutland.

Dereham fielded a quartet of players under the age of 16, with keeper George Boldero producing some stunning saves and Matt Turner supplying a couple of assists, while 15-year-old Tom Lovesey and 13-year-old Bruce van Poortvliet scored their first senior goals.

Veteran defender Pete Hazell added two more thunderbolts from short corners and Graeme Campbell completed the scoring.

Norwich Dragons rued some key decisions against them in a 2-0 defeat at Ely.

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Ely opened the scoring from a penalty corner and in the second half Dragons were angered when they did not receive a penalty stroke after their forward was brought down in the D.

A Dragons player was sin binned for arguing and later in the match another visiting player was sent to the sin bin. From the resulting penalty corner, Ely won a penalty stroke which was converted.

Norwich City suffered another heavy defeat on Saturday to remain bottom of the Premier A Division table.

City were beaten 5-0 at mid-table Ipswich and to complete a miserable day, fellow strugglers Bishop's Stortford picked up an unlikely point against high-flying Cambridge City.

Dereham also suffered defeat on the road as they were beaten 3-1 at leaders West Herts.

The visitors, who handed debuts to schoolboys James Lavers and Ryan Rollins, took a shock lead midway through the first half with a goal on the counter-attack. Ric Timm latched on to a through ball and smashed his shot past the keeper, giving Dereham a lead which they held going into half-time.

Dereham held out until West Herts grabbed a deserved equaliser with 20 minutes to go. The hosts then grabbed the lead with 12 minutes remaining and as Dereham went in search of an equaliser, West Herts scored again to kill the game off.

Norwich City III cruised to a 5-1 win against Sudbury II in Division 3NE, with goals from Jack Ingham (2), John Grange, Seth Barton and John Kidner.

In Division 4NE, Norwich Dragons II kept up their good run of form with a 1-0 win over Bury II.

After a goalless first half, Dragons' Simon Nisbet broke free down the right and squared for Richard Moulson to score from close range. Dragons continued to dominate but were unable to add a second.

Norwich City's fourth team were too strong for North Walsham II in a comprehensive 8-1 win at Cromer High School. There were doubles from Tim Armstrong, Paul Roy and Sam Sharples, along with goals from Sam Matthews and Tim Crane.

In Division 5NE, a goal early in the second half condemned Norwich City V to a 1-0 defeat against Harleston Magpies VII.

Norwich Dragons III claimed their seventh successive league win, beating Ipswich and East Suffolk IV 3-2 to stay top of the Division 6NE table.

Adrian Kemp equalised for Dragons after Ipswich had gone ahead and Mike Banham then put the leaders ahead.

Ipswich equalised in the second half, but captain George Walker came up with a late winner for Dragons.