Dereham hit back to clinch promotion
EAST LEAGUE PREMIER B: Dereham secured promotion back to the Premier A Division at the first time of asking on Saturday with a hard fought 2-1 victory over Ramgharia at Greenfields.
Dereham didn't start the game with their usual vigour, which played into the hands of the opposition, who were happy to sit back. The hosts made a couple of early chances but the keeper was up to the task.
Dereham's own keeper Tom Vaughan was also in fine form and was key in ensuring the scores were level for much of the first half, although Ramgharia broke the deadlock towards the end of the period through a short corner.
Dereham picked up the pace in the second half and eventually got their reward when Andy Lawrence's well hit short corner was deflected in by a defender.
Dereham were soon in the lead when Michael Timm coolly picked up a rebound and beat the keeper.
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The hosts continued to create chances, with Ed Turner proving too hot to handle on the right, but they were unable to add to their total.
The away team fought hard to draw level, but there was no way past Vaughan, who shared the man of the match award with Turner.
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Norwich City are well placed to join Dereham in the top flight after a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Letchworth left them seven points clear of third placed Cambridge University II with just three matches left to play.
City travel to Harpenden on Saturday knowing that a victory would almost certainly push them up to the dizzy heights of Premier A for the first time in the club's history.
City got what proved to be the only goal from their first real attack of the game. Circuit and Ashton combined well on the right hand side to find Hammond, who slipped the ball to Mark Sibson. He had the composure to guide the ball past the Letchworth keeper with a neat finish.
Norwich could and should have increased their lead on at least three occasions during the first half, with Sibson, Vincent and Morgan all going close. Leonard then made a stunning reflex save from a short corner to keep Norwich ahead.
Letchworth came roaring out of the blocks in the second half and their attacks were relentless for the next 35 minutes but City held firm and went close to adding a second through Morgan.
Elsewhere in the section Pelicans followed up last week's 6-5 defeat with a 5-5 draw at Long Sutton, Harleston Magpies II remained fifth after a 3-1 win at City of Peterborough II and Wisbech beat Harpenden 4-2.